Panic Buying Driving Egg Prices Way Up
American ingenuity unable to coax more eggs out of its overwhelmed hens
CNN Finance reports that egg demand is 44% more than normal in America, and contrary to what you might remember from your Econ 101 class, this has resulted in an 180% increase in wholesale egg prices. I actually cut more of my Econ classes than I attended, but I guess I recall that not all supply/demand charts look like proper uppercase X's, some appear to be more, um, italicized.
Elastic demand; Inelastic demand
This is called inelastic demand, due to constraints. One constraint in place is: unlike other, less natural or perishable goods such as shield masks or respirators, there are no other sources of chicken eggs. It's not like you can swap in robin eggs or ostrich eggs. And while I myself would be content to buy a carton of a dozen Cadbury chocolate eggs instead of the crackly, yolky variety, another more health-conscious consumer might complain. This has resulted in wildly inflated egg prices in stores, and although what it sets you back for eggs ought to be the very LAST thing on our minds right now, retailers are griping about wholesaler price gouging.
This kind of talk is ugly and unseemly, so we've put some of our top scientists on the task of increasing egg production in chickens:
Results have been mixed. Scientists have been unable to squeeze any further production from chickens with feathers. They've had somewhat better luck squeezing the more rubbery breeds, but the vast majority of these eggs have lacked shells, thus making transport and sale as 'fresh eggs' problematic.
We here at FoodTribe will be first with any further developments in stabilization of the American egg market.