Is another Great Ammo Shortage Coming? This week, Ukrainian officials have warned that their army is running out of ammunition in its battles with Russian forces. In the Mykolaiv region near the frontline in the south of the country, the regional governor even called for urgent international military assistance, Voice of America reported.
“Russia’s army is more powerful, they have a lot of artillery and ammo. For now, this is a war of artillery… and we are out of ammo,” Vitaliy Kim said. “The help of Europe and America is very, very important.”
Back in the United States, there could be another ammunition shortage, but not of the military kind. Instead, civilian shooters could soon face sparse shelves and high prices, especially for some of the most popular calibers. It is a true lesson in “cause and effect,” as much as “supply and demand.”
There is no denying that the “demand” for ammunition has been waning as gun sales have fallen in recent months. In some states, the sales are just slightly above pre-pandemic levels – but as lawmakers in Congress and President Joe Biden amp up the calls for gun control, sales of firearms are likely to spike again.
Such rhetoric from politicians typically “causes” American owners to buy more guns, and the result is a season or two of strong demand. The record gun sales of 2020 and early 2021 in turn affected the supply of ammunition as more shooters meant stronger sales for ammo. As supplies dwindled, shooters stocked up, which only exacerbated the issue.
Great Ammo Shortage of 2022 Looming?
Even as calls from lawmakers increased for gun control this year, that won’t likely lead to a true “Great Ammo Shortage,” at least not what began two years ago. Yet due to supply chain woes, and the fact that European ammunition imports have slowed, supplies are likely to be far below where they were before the Covid-19 pandemic began in early 2020.
Currently, all signs point to a Republican takeover of the House and Senate in November, and that could likely lessen any serious gun control efforts. Moreover, due to the record-high inflation, ammunition prices remain high enough that some shooters may have to think twice before going to the range and squeezing off a few rounds. Likewise, record-high gasoline prices are also impacting how often people get to the range.
High Ammo Prices Likely
As a result, 2022 will likely go down as the year of insanely high ammo prices. As long as gasoline stays so expensive, and inflation continues unchecked, there is little reason to think that a box of ammunition will fall to pre-pandemic levels. In other words, ammo may be far easier to find than it was just a year ago, but it will simply cost more to load up.
Now a Senior Editor for 1945, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes.