For hundreds of years, fireworks have been synonymous with celebrations around the globe. Although most Americans take part in this tradition, many are unaware of what goes into manufacturing this product and how it’s getting it into the hands of consumers. According to WorldCity’s analysis on trade numbers, in 2017, about 91 percent of all fireworks in the U.S. were imported from China. China’s pyrotechnics capital, Liuyang, is now beginning to face a variety of new challenges in 2018 which will consequently affect the U.S. fireworks industry.
According to a Global Times article, in 2017, the Chinese government began the largest-ever campaign against air pollution. Environmental protection was listed as one of the government’s top priorities for the next several years in the report to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China held in October 2017. Since February 2018, over 400 first, second and third tier cities have banned or limited the sale, transportation and lighting of fireworks.
Consolidation across factories, license renewal and limited production days are also threatening product shortages. Overall, there is a move to create larger factories which will increase safety, leaving a positive impact on the industry. However, this can extend license renewal timelines. These factors in addition to time off for heat, government meeting and general holidays all play a role in production output being at an all-time low.
Many items like firecrackers, M-150’s, bottle rockets, Roman candles and some small cakes are anticipated to be especially short this season. Here at Winco, we are confident about our overall inventory as we have worked hard with our partners in China. Although we could not fully combat the shortages, we are continuously receiving merchandise and will continue to through the end of June.