I’m Sorry to Report That There May Be a Frozen Pizza Shortage

updated Apr 20, 2020
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

At the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic, we heard a lot about the rush on beans (and oat milk). And sure, folks are still ready to gently nudge your grocery cart to the side to get to the Charmin these days, but there’s also a growing concern about another shortage at stores: frozen pizza. 

Those chilly disks of cheese, crust, and sauce are simply flying off shelves, reports Adweek. Sales of frozen pizza have gone up 91.7% in the month leading up to last week over the same period last year. That’s a total of $275 million in sales. While that’s not quite as high as the toilet paper spike (103.9%) or the cleaning supplies (some of which were more than 230% higher), it’s significantly over even stuff like TV dinners, salty snacks, and beer — all of which were between 23 and 50% up from last year.

We get it: It’s cheap, it’s easy, it’s comforting, nobody complains on pizza night, and it reminds us of the olden days, when we used to get to go out for pizza. But we may need to start finding some alternatives: The Adweek article discusses how Home Run Inn, a frozen pizza factory, is struggling to keep the plant producing due to the difficulties of getting supplies to the factory, keeping employees safe and comfortable, and getting the product out to stores. The company, which makes its own cheese, meat, and sauce, along with the pizzas, has been in overdrive, running two extra hours each day and on weekends to increase capacity from 275,000 pizzas a week to 595,000. A VP at the company said that it was like Super Bowl Sunday every day.

So, while banana bread might be the official comfort food of quarantine, it seems like frozen pizza might join it on the podium — if stores can keep it in stock. Or, if you can’t find it, you could always just make your own.