Weekly Coronavirus/COVID-19 Supply Update: Thursday, May 7, 2020
We’ve seen many new developments over the two past weeks, including some states beginning to relax their “stay-at-home” orders and allowing businesses to re-open on a limited basis. While Coronavirus/COVID-19 infection and death rates have begun to stabilize or even fall is some areas, there is still a great deal of concern regarding ongoing infections and the possibility of 2nd or 3rd waves affecting different parts of the country as we all try to get back to business.
During this time, we have begun to see (as predicted) slow improvements in product availability and pricing. While “Pandemic” pricing is still very much in play with most manufacturers, we are starting to see downward pressure on prices as domestic manufacturers ramp up to meet demand, and as more import products reaches our shores via ocean-freight (as opposed to the much higher air-freight we’ve had to live with, and pay for, over the past several months).
We expect demand to remain high for the foreseeable future, although we do not expect as many dramatic (and erratic) spikes in orders from week to week or even day to day. With that said, it’s important to get your orders in promptly, to secure FDA/CDC-approved products and to source your orders from trusted suppliers who will fill your orders as promised, and who will stand behind everything they sell. Companies like 1st Source.
More Good News: Masks, face shields, hand sanitizer, other PPE, tablet-based disinfectants and liquid disinfectants continue to be in very high demand, and we are now able to fill ALL orders from inventory or from domestic warehouses in <1 week. Please reach out to your Account Executive or call our Customer Service line to place your orders.
Backordered Items: Unfortunately, disinfecting wipes, disinfectant sprays (i.e. Lysol, SaniGuard, etc.) and nitrile gloves are also in high demand, but the manufacturers (both domestic and import) are continuing to struggle. We have sold many thousands of cases of these products but are now out of stock. While we have seen a few small re-supply orders from time to time, nationwide demand is outpacing production by a factor of 7 to 1. We expect to see significant backorders on these items continue for at least the next 2-3 weeks, and perhaps as long as 1-2 months.
1st Source Has Masks, Face Shields, Hand Sanitizer and More: To see an updated weekly list of these items (either in stock or available to order), please click on the following link to be redirected to our homepage: https://callfirstsource.com , or our on-line web store at https://shop.callfirstsource.com
A Few More Words on “Price Gouging” and “Bad Actors”
· Price Gouging: As mentioned in my previous updates, we’re continuing to see that some manufacturers and distributors have implemented massive price increases up to 500% on critical items like masks, gloves, hand-sanitizer, PPE and other products. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/27/us/coronavirus-price-gouging-hand-sanitizer-masks-wipes.html. 1st Source has never and will never engage in these practices, and we are working tirelessly to keep supplies flowing and to leverage our manufacturing partners to keep “pandemic pricing” under control as much as possible.
· Bad Actors: We’re filling more and more orders each week from new customers who were burned by unscrupulous suppliers. In some cases other suppliers shipped counterfeit or inferior products. https://nypost.com/2020/04/18/illinois-blows-17m-on-shoddy-face-masks-from-china/. Other times they quoted rapid ship times to secure orders, only to tell customers after the fact that their orders were going to be delayed for months. In the worst cases, these “Bad Actors” took the customer’s money and never filled any orders. When it comes to sourcing these critical items from questionable suppliers, remember Caveat emptor!
· 1st Source Approach: We stand behind everything we sell at 1st Source, and we are in this for the long haul. We will only sell FDA certified products, and we work very hard to provide the most accurate delivery lead times possible. While we don’t have complete control when it comes to potential delays, we strive to provide the most realistic lead times possible. We’re proud to say that we are shipping product faster than most, but we’d rather lose an order than over-promise on the delivery date and disappoint our customers.
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