Specific Seasonal Supplies In Short Supply For COVID 2nd Wave?

Will there be shortages from a second wave of Covid-19

MSB regular “rb308” asks a very good question. So I pose it for the group:

Throughout this pandemic I know I’ve found a number of holes in my preps which I’ve now been filling in.

Looking ahead to the potential of a second wave in the fall. I’ve started trying to think of things that could potentially be difficult to come by again based on season.

With this initial wave we were really coming off winter and moving into spring. Wondering if it could be different going from fall to winter?

Realizing that there could be a possible shortage of canning supplies – what with the spike in home gardening taking place this summer.

(Now I think many of us have seen a scarcity of seeds in certain places).

We burn pellets. So was also thinking about getting an order in for a couple tons NOW before there’s a run on heating fuel.

Wondering if anyone had any other thoughts on specific seasonal items that may be in short supply coming into fall and moving into winter?

~ rb308

[ Ken adds: ]

I too was (am) considering an early purchase of more pellets for my stove. Though I have a decent supply left over from last winter, instincts kick in – to be well ahead of the curve – just in case.

I believe the concerns of “rb308” are logical. We get a instinctive reaction to stock up when we begin to see shortages of (whatever). We lose faith in “the system” each time we see these shortages. Our inner being urges us to stock up.

This Wuhan Flu has affected numerous supply chains. It has also caused massive business closures. Lock-down’s. Although some areas are attempting to reopen to an extent, we don’t know about a so called “second wave”.

My gut tells me that if a 2nd-wave of Wuhan Flu begins to be hyped up in the mainstream news, there may be a “doubling down” of closures and lock-down’s. The results of which could be even worse than we’ve already seen.

Therefore, it’s a good thing to consider… “Wondering if anyone had any other thoughts on specific seasonal items that may be in short supply coming into fall and moving into winter?”


  1. I was just thinking that the other day. I know it seems illogical but the first thing that came to mind is chain saw oil. I know there is a glut of gas and possibly other petroleum products right now, but will that change with these oil producers laying off and some closing?

    1. Ken, I also just ordered another 5 cords of firewood from my local supplier. I try to stay at least 1 year ahead of the need to make sure the wood is dry as possible. We heat solely with wood and used about 4 cords this year, but have space for another 5 if I stack it high.

      We need to not only think about COVID coming back, but at the same time about the election in NOV! We can see even now how the left is responding and what they will do to come to power. No matter the outcome of the election, I truly believe things will get VERY ugly!

      And if the left comes to power, the result will be as much retaliation as possible against the “deplorables” on the right. Use the COVID excuse to shut down as much of the red states area as possible.

      1. Great minds think alike Ken. I ordered 4 cords for next week. Used the stimulus money they sent me that I really don’t need. I have about 1 1/2 cords left and use about 3 a year so I should be covered for close to 2 years

  2. I am thinking cat food, cat box liners and kitty litter. I have about a 6 month supply. If things get real bad and stores can get delivery of only the “essentials” they will not use scarce resources to bring in pet food.

    I am also thinking of batteries. 9 volt, AA, AAA, D, C…. My various flashlights take D or AA or AAA batteries; my blood pressure machine takes AAA (have to have that; it tells me how much of my medication to take.) I have a battery lamp that takes C batteries. My clocks take AA, my bathroom scale takes 9 volt. I am not sure what my smoke detector and CO2 detector take.

    1. Daisy K
      The smoke detectors and CO2 units require the 9volt batteries.

      Do you have electrical tape to cover the ends of the 9volts when you are finished using them? Those posts have to be covered, if they touch certain items they can start a fire, wanted you to be aware of that.

      1. I didn’t know that. I have black tape; not sure if it is electrical tape. I guess I need more 9 volt batteries. Also since we are talking about fall and winter, I should get more flashlight batteries.

        1. Daisy K
          It probably is electrical tape. Will be about 1/2 wide-thicker than normal tape, will be difficult to pull off a section. It will stretch when you try to tear off a piece, of the tape.
          It does not hurt to have a couple extra rolls of electrical tape in the house & garage. Colored tape for different electrical wires so you will know which is a ground, hot, neutral wire-jic.

        2. afraid I don’t know what is ground, neutral, etc. I am electronically challenged.

      2. AC,
        um, that depends on the make there kid. I have smoke/CO units that are wired into a house circuit, and they take an AA battery for back up. Most manufactures are trying to go to AA batteries, as 9 volt batteries are costly.

        1. Minerjim
          Always getting the new model that just became an antique…😂the next supply cycle.

        2. AC,
          At least you have them!!! old or new, just so long as they work. I’ve lost too many friends to Carbon Monoxide poisoning over the years.

    2. DaisyK,

      Take a look at rechargeable batteries. Enloop is a good brand of AA and AAA batteries, Panasonic makes them I believe. There are also good C and D rechargeable as well as 9V from other manufacturers. Be sure to get at least two chargers. Ken had a good post on batteries and chargers a while back.

    3. Pet food is a good idea with the meat shortages too. Especially cats, as they are obligate carnivores. Boosting canned cat food especially was one of the first things I did. I also grabbed extra mouse traps, since our cats are a kitten, and well into their 20s. I’m not sure of their hunting abilities, so….

      For winter, I think we are pretty well set as I bought spare clothing & boots this past holiday season, and nothing else is really jumping at me as I go down lists, but I am always open to deals on good winter sleeping bags so will be watching for those as it gets warmer. I also wondered about wool. Might we see wool shortages too? I’m going to keep my eyes open for really good prices on wool socks, since I get cold feet easily and wouldn’t mind having a few extra new pairs.

      1. Oh yes, I forgot one other thing I did buy for fall & winter: microgreens & sprouting seeds. Lots!

    4. Daisy K,
      You can get highly rated AA NiMH rechargeable batteries and get ‘dummy sleeves’ for them (yup, Amazon!) and they will work in any device that takes ‘C’ or ‘D’ size batteries. Maybe Ken will add a link to them here.

      The highly recommended AA’s are Eneloop (the regular capacity, not the high capacity ones) and the Eveready ones. Check out the YT video by “Project Farm” on them. He does exhaustive and, more importantly, objective reviews on all types of tools and other items. For charging them, there are compact solar chargers available (Amazon again…) As far as AAA’s go, the rechargeable variety are very low in mAH capacity. Stick with primary batteries (alkaline) or lithium for high drain devices or those that are a real pain to replace….. hope this helps!

  3. The potential for a societal breakdown if the economic recovery fails and the increased threat that China could take down part or the majority of the US power grid is real. Items such as barbed wire, plywood, boards, rebar etc. to help protect and defend your property should be on hand right now.

    Using solar powered security lights, driveway/motion sensor alarms, clearing out over grown vegetation and trimming back new growth are ways to help in securing your perimeter.

    Every fortress can be breached however, if would-be invaders decide to move on to an easier target, you have succeeded without wasting ammo.

    If you can’t defend it, you don’t own it.

  4. Honestly, the budget is already pretty much at zero, so any money spent is going toward stuff that enhances foods and such that i can grow and stuff that will help making, growing, raising. Im seeing this as a potential window to get squared away with the basics. This has changed our lifestyle and surrounding community enough that the direction is not of going after consumables so much as hard products to enhance our ability to sustain.

    The only consumables we are looking to replenish or increase are soaps and detergents, and some products like sugar, vanilla, salt, stuff for making sauces or the like.

    This thing truly has the potential to be lifestyle altering, so that is where we are placing our focus, items that will help sustain our altered lifestyle. Mind you its not a huge leap, but is more a skip that we are going to shift gears and lock the hubs so that we have what we need. Our diet will be one place where we will be making changes, good changes, we have talked about it for a long time, but now is the time to move, more veggies, less processed foods, the impediment to that has been our schedules, now im around all the time, so the garden is getting the attention it truly needs. We both love eating veggies anyway, but that sweet tooth bounces us into trouble land,,,

    So now is the chance,

    Time is the only thing for certain, so we will do our best and see what happens, one thing i am certain about,
    We will see more changes with everything.

  5. In February I asked my spouse what we would need to buy for the rest of 2020.

    Things that came to mind were things like car tires (expected need was fall for winter driving), spare light bulbs other than “60 watt” for things like cars, appliances, wall sconces, etc.

    Added some charcoal for potential additional outdoor cooking.

    Added in new supplies for disposable items such as additional types of kitchen towels to replace paper towels, handkerchiefs for tissues, more glass jars to replace the need for ziplocks.

    Also added hose and hand held sprayer to toilets to replace / reduce need for TP.

    And bought ahead for food storage and decided I needed to splurge a bit on condiments.

    Also wanted to get ahead on eyeglasses but could not get in before docs were shuttered. Now the annual prescription is no longer valid and cannot get replacements.

    Added some replacement air casts for foot /ankle injuries since our last sets from lower leg injuries were in sad shape. Only tens of dollars on amazon vs hundreds from doctors. We have had a couple of multiple month injuries requiring using these walking casts.

  6. I’ve already been looking to increase our supplies of winter goods. Getting new boots and footwear, socks, etc. Warm clothing, as we dress in layers. Getting more things like Kula said, to be more self-sustaining. I’m impressed with growing spring crops in my garden this year – mainly Asian vegetables. Grew quickly, no pests, and delicious! Hoping to save seeds. Oh, and my experiment to save seed from growing in my winter greenhouse? Not worth it. The plants were weak and I’m not sure that is the seed to save anyway. So I’ll be looking to save more seed this summer and fall. Even growing certain things just for more seed. Amazing what you can tuck into a corner here and there…. We also are stocking more lumber and hardware for projects. Even if we don’t get to them all this spring. Made a master of list and acquiring the items for them. Hitting the scrap pile hard for useable pieces too. I truly think many things may become scarce as the year goes on. We have been able to trim our expenses in other areas (such as electricity use) to get even more ahead. I believe the term is “frugal.” Getting really frugal here! Gonna recycle and reuse as much as possible. I know some things cannot be avoided, but I sincerely don’t want to put any more, or much, money in China’s pockets again. Just me.

  7. Screws. (or if you are a Nailbanger from the Islands, nails). you can always find wood to build with, whether it is scrap, dimensioned lumber, or branches or trees. you need to fasten them together with something. I scrounge the 2nd hand stores for boxes of screws/nails. Love 3″ deck screws, better than 16d nails for building. You can never have too many fasteners, never. Remember the old story of how for the loss of a horseshoe nail the kingdom was lost??? yup.

    1. We decided that 3” inch deck screws must be everyone’s favorite because both Lowe’s and Home Depot sold out very quickly in our area, while we were attempting to get a project completed. And when I asked the clerks when they might be in stock again the answer was “Lady, who knows when or if any of this stuff will be back in stock with the way things are going.” So those are something that went to the top of our list too.

      1. M’Lynn
        Check out ‘Camo’ deck screws & system for installation. Do not recall if the screws come in 3 inches. But they are a hidden deck system depending on what you are looking for.
        We purchase bulk 3 inch screws(not deck screws)for repairing the fencing around the property. See if simple fence screws will be the product you are requiring.

        If not at HD or Lowe’s try the hardware stores-Ace or True Value. If they are out check on Amazon via Ken’s site so he receives some compensation. What about e bay or Craig’s sometimes there are left over lumber materials being sold or given away.

        1. AC-
          That’s a great suggestion to try Ace. It’s a place that I totally forget about because it’s in an opposite direction, yet have been wanting to go out there and ask about a small wood stove they carry. I will check on screws when I do. Thanks!

          With everyone talking about firewood I was thinking again about wanting another axe. Were you the one who mentioned buying the Leveraxe as a gift, possibly for ACDH? If so, has it been a good one?

        2. M’lynn
          No, he has an axe in the garage but I am not sure which brand. Hope you find the items you are looking for, it may cost you a little more money but a necessary item in my book.

      2. M’Lynn – Interesting about the out of stock 3 inch deck screws. Those are essential for fortifying a home and boarding up windows. They sink nice and deep through sheet goods and into buried wall studs.

        1. tmcgyver,

          Just what I was thinking. As a matter of fact, I was researching burglar bars for windows last night, and lots of the recommendations were to make sure to get the long screws.

        2. Farmgirl – The ones used for window bars are one-way 1/4 inch lag screws; you have to cut them to remove. I used to live in LA. I’ve put up quite a few of them. Very important to have an foot activated release inside. Put your foot in the hoop and stomp down, it snaps open the latches on one side and the bars swing away for emergency egress.

        3. tmcgyver – This was at the beginning of the Stay At Home and both stores were inundated with people trying to get supplies to work on projects while they had the time, as well as contractors fighting to get enough stock for jobs booked. No one knew if those stores would close, since there wasn’t much concrete info on where we’d be “allowed” to shop once things progressed. Meaning, I think a lot of people overbought to have enough on hand, just in case. Unlike us who were still in normalcy bias of the shelves still having screws even if they didn’t have toilet paper!

          Won’t make that mistake again. Those are an item to buy in bulk from here on out! 🤣

        4. M’Lynn
          If you are looking for the 3 inch screws you should also add the other sizes to your stash. Nails in different sizes, lengths for a back up to the screws should you run out.
          Remember the little tiny screws for hinges and other possible needs. Then there are the wood screws and sheet metal screws. While there pick up a little of each so you have them on hand.
          We have cat little buckets of certain nails left over from the construction. I have placed the screws we use a lot into plastic ware containers since the boxes are falling apart. They stack on the shelves better in the plastic containers.
          If you have field & stock fencing you will need the horse shoe shaped nails.

  8. Foodsaver supplies like jar sealers & vacuum sealer bags. There’s a sudden demand for the jar sealers & they keep running out of stock everywhere. They’re going for 10X + up their usual price on ebay and I think when the food shortages really hit plus Covid-19 resurges the demand for these plus canning supplies will surge even more.

  9. The CDC or some HC analysts are expecting a second wave of new cases and deaths (up to 70%) during this “get back to work” policy, but it may all shut down again…There is talk by many economic experts the market will crash again and shortages will come back before they are solved.

    I’ll stock up on everything for summer and next winter I may be short on in storage.

  10. Plain old food. We have used a lot of our supplies right now, not going to stores to restock what has been used. That takes our food supply down a couple months. So adding in this next several months of using our food supplies means I need to restock for the winter when we cannot grow our own. The prepping way, buy a few more each trip will come to be a big blessing this winter.

  11. One hole I found in my preps was yeast. Thought I had plenty till I started cooking lots more bread. Started a new sourdough starter to compensate but 300 lbs of wheat Berry’s takes a lot of yeast. Lol

    1. Good thinking…I usually pay $2.89 for a pound of yeast for baking…found some at the nearest Amish store where I usually buy it, but for $6.99 a pound! It’s bakery packaged…they said all they could find for all their bread-baking customers. I did buy some, but I will cut the amount I use in half and let it rise longer from now on. King Artur has a good article on doing just that.

      1. Iowasue, I use Jim Leahy’s bread recipe from his book “My Bread,” and it only takes 1/4 teaspoon of yeast. The dough rises overnight and bakes in the morning. You can either use a pot to bake it in or make loaves or baguettes. It is wonderful! Many European recipes use very little yeast and use longer rising rimes. It develops such wonderful flavor. I use my own home ground white winter wheat and love it.

        1. Thanks…I have the time to try a new bread recipe…I have baked all our bread for 50 years…we are spoiled!

  12. For those with school aged children, consider what you may need should the schools close again and you will be the teacher’s aide (or the teacher, if the grid / internet go down).

    1. If you have younger kids, the Brainquest workbooks are a good basic resource. I used them as a homeschooling parent when my son was younger. I believe they are now available through 8th Grade. They’re inexpensive, cover a bit of each subject, and present in an easy to understand manner.

  13. Vitamins & meds, maybe pet food too . Went to the store today to get some Taco shells for Cinco de Mayo dinner tonight. Prices on almost everything way up!

    Viva Jose Cuervo!

  14. Animal feed. Though I do plan on growing field corn, kale, pumpkins, potatoes, winter squash, and sugar beets to store and use as feed next winter.

    During yesterday’s loop around the greengrocers in town to pick up scraps for pigs, one gave me four cases of potatoes that had begun to sprout. Hope to plant them all.

  15. If you want it or think you may need it. GET IT SOON
    Just got back from Walmart and you would think it’s late August and school is about to start. Socks,underwear and jeans were wiped out. Store inventory is probably 40% normal. Got stuff for a couple oil changes( a lot of others must be having same thoughts) picked up a new fire extinguisher🧯 got the last 3 pack of electrical tape and the last (2) 50 feet of para cord
    No toilet paper or other paper products
    No chicken. Very little beef( no ground beef) some pork ( no bacon 🥓) soup was gone also
    Did find some thermals for $1.00. Hand and body warmers for 90 % off and some Walmart brand winter boots for $ 1.00
    The only thing there was plenty of was pop and beer
    I know someone who works there and they are getting trucks just not a lot of stuff

    1. D B Cooper,
      One by one, we are losing all our “stuff.”

      Drugs and medical supplies we used to get from China are now subject to China’s ability — and willingness — to supply.

      Meat packing plants are closing due to the Chinese virus.

      Murder hornets from Asia are going to kill off our honey bees (and with them about 70 food crops that depend on bee pollination.)

      Soap and cleaning supplies are disappearing because of our sudden interest in washing hands, counters, clothes, etc.

      Manufactured products are disappearing because factories are closing down.

      Toilet paper has disappeared because people are finally listening to NRP.

      D B, you said pop and beer are still available. So is marijuana. The elite who want to enslave us are making sure we have plenty of sugar, alcohol, and weed to keep us happy and occupied while they finish taking over.

  16. I called about filling the propane tank and was told “supply and demand” has caused propane to not fall in price as much as usual from last winter’s prices.

    Figured with gasoline and oil prices falling tremendously, propane would also be a lot lower.

  17. Salt/Mineral blocks to bring in the deer.Good idea to fill your tags early.
    Many folks that don’t hunt might start.
    Get all the flour,sugar,and salt you can find.Have you noticed the new
    SPAM commercials?
    Listen to me.You would think I’m expecting something bad to happen..
    We’ve had parents and in-laws that lived during the depression so when
    they talked we paid attention.
    I think that I will miss butter the most.

    1. Just read an article that stated hunting licenses are way up, as in number of folks getting them. Part of that article was about a guy who had never hunted, went and bought a rifle and ammo and a license, and was quoted as saying something like, “some people shoot thing for trophys or something, but I am going to shoot a deer for meat.” What a joke. People…be afraid. And watch out for those who go out to shoot something and have NO clue as to what they are doing, like this guy. Hunting is not just buying a gun and thinking you know how to safely use it and can shoot something. I can see this going south in many ways.

      1. Oh, and how much meat will these people waste? They do not know how to field dress or butcher, and they do not know how to track an injured animal. Horrifying that these folks think, “shoot, kill, eat” and will most likely shoot, injure, not find, or find too late to eat the meat.

        1. Pegasus
          No classes to in order to have that hunting permit? Hope they make them wear the orange or bright colored vest when out in the field.

          On second thought they should have to hire an experienced hunter with knowledge how to “hunt & field dress” an animal. Then they receive the rubber stamp on their license, before they are turned lose in the field and other experienced hunters. 🙄😣

      2. Pegasus,
        Only saving grace is that most states require Hunter safety classes before they can apply for a license. In Colorado at least, part of that training includes how to field dress an animal. So they should be able to at least stumble through it. But your point is taken, how many that kill an animal will waste the meat or poison themselves by not caring for it properly.

      3. Pegasus,

        Understand your concern. No doubt there are millions of urban folks, some who may have actually hunted at one time in their life, who see themselves diving into the woods and bringing home the meat. Even more that don’t have a clue what they are doing.

        Mostly fantasy. Even discounting the lack of skill, and even if they follow the game laws, the deer herds/squirrel/rabbit populations will be decimated within a year of that kind of increased pressure. Furthering that pressure will be those that do have the skills who will disregard game laws, bag limits, etc., and will poach off other folks property. Hunger and deprivation will quickly break through the thin veneer of civil behavior.

        I’ve mentioned before that I expect to be spending much time defending against poachers and trespassers encroaching on my homestead acres. We have to deal with “city hunters” (translated, hard drinkers riding the roads at night with spotlights “hunting”) during good times. I see that increasing exponentially if food supplies become scarce.

        1. Ok, I’ll say it, “how many hunters will be killed by other hunters after one of them bagged a deer/other game and the other one didn’t? Or will be shot at for being (competition) out there hunting for deer/other game?

  18. Went to Shaw’s and BJ’s while out to pick up DW meds. Since things started to look like things were going bad,every store we go into we are looking for anything to add to our preps!
    Can not believe the price increases, everything seems to have gone up suddenly. Today we saw pork loin for 4.29 a pound, double what it used to be. We have lucked out and found ham’s for 99 a pound bought a few.
    Don’t know where it will go from here but will check my hardware items .
    Also keeping tabs on stock of gas as I am cutting fire wood, have two years going for three.
    Keep on prepping and hang tight it might get rough out there.

  19. I’m putting up enough firewood as well for two years. This coming winter could be tense. At least I’ll have a warm house if power grind falls apart.

  20. Had enough supplies delivered to build a green house as I noticed screws and the plastic sheet board in short supply. Need to top off meds, find a good milk Substitute and tighten up the meat situation. I’ll wait to butcher a bull calf until it cools off. They should be 6/8 months old by then and big enough to be worth the effort. Order 28 round bails as I expect a rough summer and rougher winter for hay production.

    1. We’re looking into buying another freshwater tank, a1550 gallon tank. Had to call two places before we found one. Water is scarce up here and we catch it off our roof. Other than that canning supplies are high on our list.

    2. RWT
      NIDO whole milk powder by Nestle is pretty good, Target? Wallmart? Should have it

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