Busy parents and sandwich lovers across the country are asking themselves the same question after noticing a troubling trend in their grocer’s freezer aisle: Where are the Uncrustables? Families have taken to social media with reports of being unable to find their child’s favorite variety of Uncrustables in stores. But is there really an Uncrustables shortage?
“Why can’t I find any of the ones with peanut butter and jelly of any flavor,” one parent asked in a comment left on Uncrustables’ official Facebook page, adding the sealed crustless sandwich was currently the only thing her son wanted to eat. “I’ve been to two different Walmarts and two different grocery stores over several weeks and they never have any.”
Some parents have even reported that they’d been unable to find certain Uncrsutables flavors for months. “Start getting strawberry Uncrustables back in distribution,” one mother wrote in a comment to the brand on Facebook. “My kiddo is sensory sensitive and that is the only thing he eats for lunch. This has been months now.”
On Twitter, consumers shared similar experiences of struggling to find Uncrustables in stores near them. “I can't find your PB&J product at Costco or @Target or at Smart and Final anymore,” one mom tweeted to the brand.
Some have gone so far as to deem a supposed shortage of the treat a crisis. “The Uncrustables shortage is the crisis no one is talking about,” one Twitter user wrote.
While demand for Uncrustables is certainly up — and some parents have reported having trouble finding the sealed circular crustless sandwich in stores — it’s not completely clear if what consumers are seeing is an official shortage or merely a rapid increase in demand following a period of paused productivity.
When the coronavirus pandemic sparked widespread panic buying in the spring of 2020, The J.M. Smucker Co. — which produces Uncrustables along with Jif Peanut Butter and Smucker's jams, jellies, and fruit spreads — reportedly paused product launches and reduced production of certain items, including its peanut-butter varieties of Uncrustables in order to prioritize replenishing stock of other higher-demand products and brands. According to California News-Times, the company has since resumed normal production levels and launches.
In fact, a spokesperson for The J.M. Smucker Co. tells Romper they feel they’ve largely been able to meet consumers’ demand. “With more consumers working from home we have seen an increase on top of the already strong demand for our Smucker’s Uncrustables but have largely been able to continue to meet this need by adding capacity and improving efficiency at our manufacturing facilities,” the spokesperson said. “Please know there are many elements that can impact product distribution and select markets or locations may experience varying levels of availability for certain products in the short-term, however, we work closely with our retail partners to understand and address their inventory needs.”
Additionally, the brand has sought to ease the minds of frustrated consumers on Twitter by noting it is “prioritizing the production of our Uncrustables products.”
Whether your grocer’s freezer aisle is stocked or stripped of Uncrustables, parents can use the brand’s official website to check which food retailers near them sell the popular crustless crimped sandwich. Happy hunting.