Global supply chain issues have impacted a range of goods and services, now a New York tradition is at stake.
The latest supply chain slump has sent bakery and deli owners from New York City to North Carolina into a frenzy, as they frantically attempt to secure enough cream cheese to keep sales from spreading thin, The New York Times reports. Logjams at shipping ports, a scarcity of containers to freight goods, and a lack of drivers to transport them across the country—all these consequences of a global pandemic have fueled an international supply chain crisis. One NYC bagel shop owner said he had enough cream cheese to last only 10 days, while a Brooklyn shop owner said he was preparing to drive to New Jersey to collect 2,000 pounds of the stuff. In 30 years, one Brooklyn deli-owner said, he’d never once been out of cream cheese. A Kraft Heinz spokeswoman (the company supplies the cream cheese most shops use as a starter base for their own recipes) said they’ve shipped out 35 percent more product than last year to clients in the food industry. The holiday season has only complicated matters; more Americans are ordering goods online, and bakeries are receiving more orders for cream cheese-based dessert recipes. But reports indicate the crisis could continue for months, if not years. Bad news for bagel businesses. For some of us—what is a bagel, really, without cream cheese? —Safiya Charles