It could be a blue Christmas this year for artificial tree buyers.
Wholesalers are warning high demand coupled with nationwide supply shortages are limiting stock and driving up retail prices ahead of the holiday season.
“What we’re saying to consumers is act now, go out and buy today,” National Tree Company CEO Chris Butler told “America Reports” Friday. “The peak week for buying Christmas trees is around that Thanksgiving time, and we think by that point the shelves might be quite empty.”
The National Tree Company is seeing “record” demand for seasonal décor as Americans plan to return to larger celebrations following the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Demand however is being met with a constraint in supply containers coming from China dating back to early summer.
“We’re suddenly scrambling to get containers along with every other importer of goods from China,” Butler said. “Not only we were unable to get all of the containers that we wanted to get, but also the prices have gone up tenfold.”
Price increases will be passed onto the consumer with artificial tree costs expecting to rise 20%-30% this fall. Butler believes prices will not deter consumers looking to spend money and furnish new homes purchased during the pandemic.
“With this strong demand, consumers are willing to buy them,” he said.
Seventy-five percent of U.S. households displayed a Christmas tree last year with 85% of those trees being artificial, according to the American Christmas Tree Association. The National Christmas Tree Company’s most popular trees are expected to cost between $200 and $300 this year.