A canned whipped cream shortage comes just days before the Christmas holiday when dessert dishes call for a ready supply of the topping.
Because of an "industry-wide supply issue," manufacturers are warning consumers that some canned whipped creams, like the popular Reddi-wip, could be hard to find, according to The Washington Post.
“There is currently a shortage of some whipped toppings, including Reddi-wip,” Lanie Friedman, a representative for Conagra Foods, which makes Reddi-wip, told the newspaper this week.
The shortage was reportedly the result of a tragic accident that took place back in August at an Airgas chemical plant in Florida that affected the supply of nitrous oxide, the gas responsible for keeping whipped toppings fluffy in their containers.
According to The Post, two gas tankers and a nitrous oxide holding tank exploded at the plant, killing one worker.
Nitrous oxide, which is also used for medical purposes, is apparently now in short supply.
“This is impacting any company that uses nitrous oxide in food, so includes private label and competitive whipped topping too,” Friedman told Fox News, adding that the “medical use of its nitrous oxide takes priority at this point.”
Airgas considers itself the largest North American producer of the gas, according to its website.
A spokesperson with Conagra, which is based in Chicago, told the Chicago Tribune that some stores will have the product in stock, but the supply will be very limited.
“It’s in stores now, but we’re encouraging people to buy it early,” Friedman said. “There will be a shortage if people buy at the typical levels during the holidays.”
Conagra expects the canned whipped cream to be fully back in stock by February of 2017.
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