Christmas Trees: Going, Going, Gone

The Christmas Tree Shortage in America


Nicole Michalou from Pexels

Many families around the world gather around the traditional Christmas tree as they celebrate the holiday season. The Covid-19 pandemic and a diminished supply have contributed to a global shortage in live trees this year.

MURRAY, NEB.–For centuries, the Christmas tree has been a staple decoration, and for many people who celebrate the holiday, it is a must have. For some of those people however, that might prove to be a challenge this year. That’s right folks, we are in a Christmas tree shortage.

With heightened restrictions and a deadly virus, people are eager for a bit of joy in their lives. What better way than to celebrate Christmas with a live tree this year. The only problem is…everyone else had the same idea.

Tree farms are having record sales. Employees at Hickory Creek Farm report that they sold what is usually a season’s worth of trees in just nine days.

On top of that though, we would already have a shortage. It takes about 12 years for a tree to mature to the point where it would be used. A little math tells us that 12 years ago was 2008. And if you are old enough to remember that much about 2008, you might recall that we were in a recession.

At a point in time when people were having to pinch their pennies, there wasn’t a lot of interest in spending money on a tree. So many farms were forced to forgo planting that year or do a smaller batch. Others had to shut down.

There’s another hit on consumers though. Due to the lack of supply, prices are through the roof. In Hong Kong, an 8-foot tree can cost upwards of $2,000.

This is just a continuation of an already growing trend. Supply has been decreasing over the last few years causing a 30% increase in prices. But the tree shopping frenzy is only exacerbating the situation.

In light of everything that’s going on, a real tree can be a nice touch. But maybe this year, it’s easier, and cheaper, to go with a fake one. Happy holidays everybody.