Pandemic Supply Chain Issues Affecting New and Expectant Parents

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Expectant parents aren’t just waiting for their bundles of joy to arrive, they’re also expecting furniture and necessary items for their babies due to global supply chain issues.

"When you order something and they say you can’t get it, and if the baby is due in four weeks and the order is 10 weeks, you’re very disappointed,” said Dr. Albert Williams, Chair and Associate Professor of Finance and Economics at Nova Southeastern University.

Williams said the supply chain issues from the COVID-19 pandemic have caused a backlog on baby products like cribs, changing tables, strollers, car seats and chair recliners.

“We spend days to figure out what’s the best crib, best stroller and car seat but then when you order it, there’s a back order. The back order used to be 10 weeks and now it might be 20 weeks," Williams said. "There’s something about a baby, it’s called an unforgiving timeline and you have no choice in the matter. You have to be ready."

The delay for goods has affected everyone across the globe, but parents are in that special subgroup which doesn’t have as much flexibility to wait for those essential items based on that looming due date deadline.

A combination of labor shortages, production cutbacks and slowdowns at some ports have forced retailers worldwide to deal with these issues.

"Because of the Covid pandemic was a global concern it reduced production and therefore supply of pretty much everything across the board. Therefore when they started back, it’s taking them a little more time to get their act together,” said Williams.

The economics professor said the need for these products isn’t going anywhere as the U.S. expects almost four million babies to be born this year on average.

“That’s a big demand for baby products. All economic strata have a demand for baby products," Williams said.

If you’re a parent in this waiting game situation, Williams suggests trying to find baby items in person at brick and mortar stores or to look for used items in the meantime.

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