Chicken wing shortage is latest pandemic-related setback

Apr 24, 2021, 8:32 PM | Updated: 8:47 pm
chicken wing shortage...
At least one wing restaurant has reached out to customers asking for patience as Americans endure another pandemic-related shortage. (Photo: Canva)
(Photo: Canva)

SALT LAKE CITY — First it was toilet paper. Then Dr. Pepper, coins, mountain bikes and RVs. Now, chicken wings are the latest commodity to run scarce because of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

It started with the Super Bowl in 2021. That’s when, according to Restaurant Business Online, those who need chicken wings (think Wing Stop) were having a hard time getting enough of them.

And the chicken wing shortage hasn’t gotten better since then.  Newsweek reports that a wing joint in Texas is reaching out to their customers and community asking for their understanding during the shortage.

Today the chicken business is dealing with the sharp side of the dual-edged sword called demand. Americans ate 1.42 billion wings while watching the Super Bowl in February. And in the whole of 2020, people eating chicken wings in restaurants increased by 7 percent (as compared to 2019.)

And yes, this is despite the restaurant closures in 2020 that were also connected to the pandemic.

Why the chicken wing demand?

First of all, it’s comfort food. It makes us feel nostalgic.

And, it’s no stranger to food delivery. According to MarketWatch, the DoorDash, Uber, GrubHub and Postmates delivery apps had combined earnings of more than $5 billion in 2020 which doubled their combined revenues in 2019.

According to DoorDash and GrubHub, 30% of the people that use their apps want chicken. Chinese food, pizza, burgers and sushi round out the top five requested types of delivery food.

So what’s a wings-lover to do?

Learn to like cauliflower and other meatless chicken products that are shaped like wings. That’s one of the suggestions made by Modern Restaurant Management when Newsweek asked. Or go for the chicken tenders or a chicken sandwich. 

And have faith. Toilet paper came back, didn’t it?



Today’s Top Stories


draper shooting police...
Mark Jones

Party ban becomes permanent for Airbnb

Airbnb announced this week that it is placing permanent ban on disruptive parties. In April, two people died in a shooting at an Airbnb in Draper.
4 days ago
In this undated photo released by Toyota Motor Corp., its bZ4X vehicle is shown during an online pr...
YURI KAGEYAMA AP Business Writer

Toyota recalls electric car for faulty wheel that may detach

The "bz" in the recalled model's name, as well as others in the works, stands for a "beyond zero" series, including sport-utility vehicles of all sizes, pickup trucks and sportscars, according to Toyota.
10 days ago
A model wears a creation as part of the Giorgio Armani men's Spring Summer 2023 collection presente...

Gucci unveils ‘HaHaHa’ collaboration with Harry Styles

Gucci has teamed up with Harry Styles for a between-season collection that infuses tailoring with adolescent joy. The collection is titled “HaHaHa.”
14 days ago
A now hiring sign in an Arby's window.; the Utah employment summary for May showed a slight slowing...
Amie Schaeffer

May’s Utah employment report showing signs of inflation impact

The employment rate in Utah remains steady but may be showing signs of inflation's impact, according to the state's May employment summary.
17 days ago
Attic fire in Cowabunga Bay building....
Mark Jones

Cowabunga Bay Water Park set to reopen Thursday after fire last weekend

Following a building fire last weekend, Draper's Cowabunga Bay Water Park is scheduled to reopen to the public on Thursday.
19 days ago
Utah airbnb rentals rising interest rates affecting millennial home buyers...
Dan Bammes

One realtor sees “signs of hope” in Utah housing market

With home listings up and home sales down, one Utah realtor is encouraged about the future of the Utah housing market, leading to what she calls "signs of hope."
20 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Tax Harassment...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Joseph Smith Memorial Building...
Temple Square

The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is an icon of Salt Lake City | Why hosting an event at this beautiful location will make you a hero this year

Here's why hosting an event at the iconic Joseph Smith Memorial Building in downtown Salt Lake City will make you a hero this year.
Chicken wing shortage is latest pandemic-related setback