Buffalo, NY (WBEN) In the birthplace of the chicken wing, the price of that hot, medium, or mild bucket is on the rise. One expert says a government strategy led to a key production cost soaring.
Burt Flickinger compares the chicken wing shortage of 2013 to the gas shortage of 1973. "With regard to inflation, when the government did fiscal easing, that led to corn, and other feed for chicken to go up," explains Flickinger. In turn, he says chicken producers cut back on growing chickens after it turned out the chickens were costing more to feed than the selling price growers agreed upon with restaurants.
While the supply has come down, demand has not. "Restaurants like La Nova locally, stores like Tops and Wegmans, and national chains like Buffalo Wild Wings are increasing demand for those wings," says Flickinger.
In fact, Flickenger says for each dollar you spend on wings now, you can expect to pay 10 to 20 cents more for wings. He says the supply and demand should even out again come the summer of 2014.
McDonald's is testing McWings in Atlanta and Chicago markets. There is a shortage due to some of the reasons stated in this brief article. But when a giant like McDonald's adds or contemplates adding a new item, they pre purchase and store enough so if they roll it out nationally, they have enough. McDonald's has 14,000 US locations.
Get used to paying $10-13 per 10 wings. At that cost, if you are getting large, quality wings, they cost the pizzeria/rest about 42%. That still breaks the industry food cost rule of thumb of 28-33% food cost.