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March Wholesale Egg Prices and Sales Sharply Increase According to Nielsen

03/25/2020

Sales of shell eggs increased 44 percent for the week ending March 14th compared to the second week of March in 2019.  This was due to panic buying by consumers who are eating home-cooked meals.

 

According to Urner Barry, wholesale egg prices have risen 180 percent from extremely low levels since the end of February as confirmed by USDA data.

 

According to CNN Business representatives of some chains have complained about price increases that have been characterized as "unconscionable."  What is in fact unconscionable is the nickel and dime approach of chain buyers during successive months of relative over-supply.  Despite low wholesale prices, chains maintain shelf markups and benefit from increased margins while depressing demand to the detriment of the industry.

 

Perhaps this period of unusual demand and high prices will have created a new realization of the value of eggs among consumers. Perhaps buyers following Urner Barry quotations will not revert to demanding prices that were below cost of production during eight months of 2020.