‘Unprecedented’ fireworks inventory issues spark price hike for 2021 holiday

Your Money Matters

SIOUX FALLS S.D. (KELO) — Firework sales are now underway all across KELOLAND; sales for South Dakota residents began Sunday. There are several reasons people hoping to celebrate Independence Day with Firecrackers, fountains or bottle rockets should shop early this year.

“The colors, the sounds, I’ve always been enthused with fireworks, even as a little kid, you just can’t beat it, they’re just incredible,” shopper Josh Statler said. 

Statler always celebrates the Fourth of July with fireworks, but this year, he started stocking up even earlier than usual.

“I waited last year and they did not have what I wanted, so you’ve got to buy early,” Statler said. 
That’s especially true this year.

“This is unprecedented. I’ve never in all my years of selling seen anything like this,” Hot Shot Fireworks owner Shelly Raderschadt said. 

After nearly four decades selling fireworks, Hot Shot owner Shelly Raderschadt says she’s never seen the inventory issues the industry is facing this summer.

“We are seeing shortages, we are seeing some stands that are not going to be able to open this year because they did not get their fireworks,” Raderschadt said. 

She says it all stems back to covid complications with international shipping.

“China has put an extra huge shipping charge per container,” Raderschadt said. “Then right now the other issue is all of these containers sitting in California and because of covid, no one’s working and they’re not unloading them.”



Those increased shipping costs mean customers can expect to pay a little more for the fireworks that are available this year.

“I would say in that 10 percent range,” Raderschadt said. 

But even if the price tag is a little higher, enthusiasts like Statler say they’re just happy to find some fireworks.

“For me it is, I’ll pay the difference, it’s not a huge increase but it’s definitely noticeable,” Statler said. 

Raderschadt said Hot Shot Fireworks doesn’t expect to see shortages this year because they bought more fireworks than usual, planning ahead after last year’s sales were up more than 50 percent from 2019.

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