High Shipping Demands May Impact Fireworks This Summer

June 2, 2021, 3 p.m. ·

A stack of fireworks in an open box
A shipping crunch involving goods coming from China could affect fireworks sales this summer. (Courtesy Wild Willy's Fireworks)

For many, stimulus dollars have transformed into amazon packages and online orders, which is fine until overseas shipping capacity can’t meet the demand. The shipping crunch out of China could affect fireworks sales in Nebraska during the 4th of July holiday.  

With freight rates skyrocketing and capacity squeezed, getting space on boats to ship hazardous materials like fireworks has been challenging this year. Despite the tight shipping market, Kracklin' Kirks Fireworks in Crete believes they will be just fine. Kirk Myers is the president of the wholesale and retail company and said they have leftover inventory from last year, so they aren’t too worried about meeting the demands of Nebraska customers. However, Myers believes that will not be the case for his competitors.

"My guess is you'll probably see fewer stands overall," Myers said. "If you're a national company and you normally have 7,000 stands, but you're only getting 70% of what you ordered, do you supply them all and plan on running out of fireworks on July 2nd? Or do you cut back on 30% of your stands?”

Dan Williams is the owner of Wild Willy’s Fireworks in Springfield and said logistically, everything is at max capacity.

"When you had the United States all of the sudden sending all of these orders to China, for not only fireworks but the hundreds of millions of other items that China makes for us, everything was trying to leave at once," Williams said.

Despite the issues with the supply chain, both owners expect firework sales to be at a high this year, with people excited to celebrate after a year in lockdown. They’ll also have more choices…..Nebraska lawmakers earlier this year passed a law that will allow vendors to sell bottle rockets and other fireworks that had been illegal in Nebraska, but legal in neighboring states.