Buyers are being warned to get their holiday gifts early, as supply chain and shipping container issues create a looming toy shortage nationwide.
The supply chain issue is already putting pressure on toy stores as we enter the holiday shopping season.
“Honestly, when we place these orders, we keep our fingers crossed that they get here before Christmas,” said Allen Singleton, owner of a toy store in Ohio.
Singleton adds that they are already feeling the pinch of global shipping delays which only add to the rising cost of popular toys that they estimate to be 20% more expensive.
According to the Toy Association, more than 85% of toys sold in the United States are made overseas. The industry supports more than 600,000 jobs in the United States with an annual economic impact of more than $ 97 billion.
“It’s really an end-to-end failure that’s been building since the pandemic,” said Steve Pasierb, president and CEO of The Toy Association. “From factories in China to ports in Asia to ports here in the United States to the US trucking industry. Complications every step of the way have led to this huge backlog of containers, ships and cargo that might not make it to stores in time for the holidays.
The Toy Association said it is actively campaigning with the Federal Maritime Commission and Congress, working to advance legislation that would give the Federal Maritime Commission more “power” in the future to regulate the industry.
“Your local store is going to have shortages and we are already seeing gaps with the major retailers – your Walmart, your target – who are responding by reserving their own ships and doing whatever they can to get their products in,” said Pasierb.
He said anyone buying toys this season should start soon, with some of the best supplies already on store shelves.
“Normally we wait until Thanksgiving and after Thanksgiving for the best sellers. These sales may not take place this year, ”Pasierb said.
As retailers large and small await orders, parents are encouraged to speak with their children that this year may be more difficult to fill a holiday toy wish list.
“Make sure you let the kid know if he’s filling out a vacation list to put a lot of items on it and understand that he’s getting a percentage,” Singleton said. “You don’t get everything you want.”
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