Throwback: It’s a sriracha crisis. Huy Fong Foods has paused production of its famous sriracha, the official hot sauce of the 2010s, due to a “severe shortage” of chili peppers. (The company’s sambal oelek and chili-garlic sauce are also affected.) The news was shared with buyers, Bloomberg reports, in a letter that was dated to April, but which only recently surfaced. According to the letter, the shortage is a result of weather conditions, which have left the company “unable to produce” anything.
This certainty would have been cataclysmic only ten years ago, when our nation was in the throes of Sriracha Mania. America danced with the possibility of a sriracha shortage back then, after California’s Department of Public Health halted shipments for 30 days. This would’ve, no doubt, been greeted as more dire news in 2013, a time when it was considered innovative and interesting to put sriracha into all sorts of stuff, like, say, vodka.
Those days have long since passed, but who knows? If the last couple years have shown us anything, maybe a chili-pepper shortage will cause New Yorkers — or at least washed-up millennials — to treat it like Pappy Van Winkle and panic buy any bottle they see, no matter the inevitable markup.