Local businesses face product shortages across the Tri-Cities

Local

TRI-CITIES, Tenn./Va. (WJHL) — From construction to coffee shops and everything in between, businesses all over the Tri-Cities are experiencing product shortages.

Local businesses have been through a tough year and a half, and it’s not getting any easier as they’re facing product shortages in some of their most essential items.

“I mean I’ve never had a problem getting cups, disposable cups before,” owner of Dos Gatos Coffee Bar Dick Nelson said.

Nelson is offering customers a discount if they bring their own containers for coffee.

“We come in in the morning, and we don’t want to be surprised, so I get it,” Nelson said. “But over the next few weeks, few months, you may get a different kind of cup each time.”

Nelson not only owns the coffee shop, but also a custom picture framing company where he said materials are slim as well.

“Usually a one to two-week turnaround for framing has sometimes turned into four, five, or six weeks,” Nelson said. “Or, we have to totally change a frame because a company doesn’t have it.”

COVID-19 related issues and staff shortages around the nation are contributing to the shortages.

Developer Kelly Wolfe with Wolfe Development GP builds houses and apartments. The list of products he’s having trouble ordering is ever-growing.

“Bathtubs, tub shower combos, you wouldn’t think it would be that big of a deal to get a bathtub, but it has been a tremendous struggle,” Wolfe said. “Heating and air units have been quite a challenge. Light fixtures, interior doors, garage doors, and appliances. That’s some of the big things that we run into problems on.”

Wolfe said he’s stayed on top of the shortages, and so far, it hasn’t prevented him from building anything he wanted to yet.

“You have to plan far in advance of anything you’ve ever planned for before,” Wolfe said. “And then, maybe, you’ll have things when you want.”

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