Which Came First… the Chicken or the Egg Shortage?

I'm sure some of you used to watch The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson that aired on NBC-TV for nearly 30 years.

If so, you probably remember that Johnny would often make a declarative statement about something such as how hot the weather was. And then sidekick Ed McMahon (often along with the studio audience) would set Johnny up for a joke by saying, "How hot was it?"

Both Johnny and Ed are gone now. But if they were still around today, Johnny would probably comment on the high price of eggs. At which point Ed and the audience would respond with, "How expensive are they?"

And Johnny might follow with, "Eggs are so expensive, an egg-laying hen just surpassed Elon Musk in net worth."

We would have laughed at that yolk… sorry, joke… but we're not laughing at the current egg shortage. We're also not finding the incredibly high price of eggs humorous. And that's when we're fortunate enough to find them at the grocery store. 

Egg Prices Soar 60% 

I'd love to tell you the egg shortage and the outlandish prices of eggs are just a temporary thing we can wait out. But I have to agree with a recent headline in Newsweek magazine:

"America's Egg Shortage Is About to Get a Whole Lot Worse."

In December, the price of eggs was nearly 60% higher than a year earlier, according to the Consumer Price Index. 

As a result, many people are buying chickens and raising them. This demand on hatcheries is strong, and some breeds have sold out. Meghan Howard is in charge of sales and marketing for Meyer Hatchery in Polk, Ohio.

"We're already sold out on a lot of breeds – most breeds – until the summer," she told the New York Times. "It's those egg prices. People are really concerned about food security."

Ginger Stevenson is director of marketing at Murray McMurray Hatchery in Webster City, Iowa. She said, "When we sell out, it's not like: Well, we can make another chicken."  

Bird Flu Is the Chief Culprit

So, why are there egg shortages, which lead to higher prices? There are several reasons for this recent disturbing trend. 

First and foremost is the largest global bird flu outbreak in recorded history. When combined with increases in the cost of fuel, feed, and packaging – plus continuing supply chain issues – it's a problem with no end in sight. 

The bird flu – or avian influenza or HPAI – has resulted in approximately 58 million chickens and turkeys in 47 states needing to be destroyed. That's according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The disease, often spread by wild birds, is extremely contagious. There are more than a dozen strains of bird flu, including some that are highly pathogenic.

Many of the infected birds show no signs of their illness. Others experience lack of appetite, lethargy, swelling, and lack of egg production. Ducks, geese, and other migratory birds can get it too, but they rarely get sick. However, they can spread it through their droppings. 

Easter Egg Hunts Just Got Real

What has this shortage done to prices? In December 2021, the average cost of a dozen eggs was about $1.79. Fast forward a year and the average price was approximately $4.25.

In some states, average egg prices have leaped even higher. Such as $7.37 in California and $5.29 in Montana, according to the USDA's Egg Market Overview report.

High prices alone are enough to scare off many consumers. But even those who are willing to pay the price often face empty shelves in stores or limits on how many cartons they can purchase.

Of course, egg shortages and prices also affect the prices of products made with eggs. Including salad dressing, bread, cake, and other baked goods. And with Easter coming up, demand will spike. And that could result in even higher prices.  

A Short-Term & Long-Term Solution 

We have no way of knowing how long the egg shortage will continue. We also don't know when the price of eggs will drop to a manageable level.

Here's what we do know. Today you can order a 3-Pack of Whole Egg Powder from 4Patriots in durable #10 cans that will provide you with 216 total servings of delicious, whole eggs. And you can enjoy them now, or anytime over the next 10 years under proper storage conditions.

Packed with protein and Vitamins A and D, this egg powder requires no refrigeration. Great for breakfast, you can also include eggs in your favorite recipes. It's a perfect addition to your emergency food supply.

I'll even toss in free shipping and handling, as well as an interest-free payment plan if you'd like one. But hurry, there’s a limited stock and I’m not sure when we’ll be able to get more…

Here's how to get yours…

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