You're not crazy if you've noticed a severe drop in the availability of cat food on store shelves. Specifically wet cat food. For weeks now, the normally packed shelves of options has been limited to just a few varieties of the least popular brands.

The picture below with the SUPER empty shelves is of the wet cat food section in a local super market on May 2nd, 2022. (The availability of dry cat food is better but not great.) The problem is widespread and not just a Montana thing.

We ended up having to check two other grocery stores and a national pet chain to find a few varieties my uber-picky cat will eat. (This has nothing to do with buying local or trying high-end food. I've tried everything and now just have to buy what the annoying cat eats. Some of it's foo foo, some of it's cheaper, national brands. When it's not available, I have to go search...the cat won't eat 'just whatever' I buy.)

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There are basically three reasons for the current shortage of cat food. Supply chain issues pertaining to the meat used in cat food, an aluminum shortage (for cans) and a significant increase in cat adoption over the last 12 - 24 months.

photo: Michelle Wolfe
photo: Michelle Wolfe

The aluminum shortage has been a large drag on many consumer products' availability. Did you run into problems last summer finding your favorite beverage or six pack of beer?

Often, quickie marts had very little in stock with regard to "buy one at a time" beverages such as Mikes, Twisted Tea, White Claw, etc. The large, single cans were (and still are) in high demand.

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