These Shortages Worried Consumers Most in 2022, According to Google Searches

Empty shelves  at the grocery store / supermarket.


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Baby Milk Formula and Baby Bottles

Worst Shortages of 2022

It's unnerving when you can't get your hands on something you normally take for granted, from food to medication. A variety of products have been in short supply in the U.S. in 2022, leading frustrated consumers to type into their preferred search engine, "Why is there a shortage of baby formula?" or "Is there a tampon shortage?" Here are the products that prompted the most searches in 2022, according to Google's annual Year in Search report

Related: These Are Stores' Most-Stolen Items

baby milk bottle

2. Baby Formula Shortage

For months, parents struggled with shortages of baby formula, and out-of-stock rates jumped to a shocking 40% or more. Stores including Target, Kroger, Walgreens, and CVS implemented purchase limits amid recalls and ongoing supply-chain issues. Desperate parents posted pleas on social media, bartered, and drove to far-flung cities to secure the formula they needed.

Woman reaching for another pack of sanitary pads

3. Tampon Shortage

People who menstruate found empty shelves instead of tampons at stores across the country this spring. Users on social media reported that chain pharmacies were mostly cleared out as suppliers were unable to fulfill orders. Labor challenges, increasing materials costs, and logistics issues all contributed to the shortage.

Prescription Drugs

4. Adderall Shortage

An Adderall shortage was officially announced in October by the Food and Drug Administration, which attributed the insufficient supply to manufacturing delays. The drug is prescribed to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and narcolepsy, and the shortage is expected to continue into 2023.

Huy Fong's Rooster Sriracha HOT Chili Sauce

5. Sriracha Shortage

Huy Fong Inc., one of the largest producers of Asian hot sauces, warned of a shortage of the beloved hot sauce back in June. "Unfortunately, we can confirm that there is an unprecedented shortage of our products," the company said in a statement. "We are still endeavoring to resolve this issue that has been caused by several spiraling events, including unexpected crop failure from the spring chili harvest."

Related: We Tried 20 Popular Hot Sauces. This Is the Best

Unrecognizable woman shops for produce in supermarket
SDI Productions/istockphoto

Other Top Searches

  • Food shortage
  • Cream cheese shortage
  • Avocado shortage
  • Lettuce shortage
  • Epidural shortage