But if today's Sales Update email from the Civilian Marksmanship Program is an indication, manufacturers remain stretched and consumer demand remains strong:
AMMUNITION UPDATE. The CMP has been notified by ammunition manufacturers and distributors to expect price increases and significant delivery delays for all calibers of ammunition, especially for .22 rimfire. The price increases and delays apply to orders we have already placed with the manufacturers. Prior to 2013 CMP received deliveries of truckloads of ammo within a few weeks of placing orders. We are now being advised, as in the case of Aguila .22, that it may take several years to receive all of the 35,000,000 rounds of Aguila ammo we have on order.
As a result of this situation, CMP has placed orders with several different manufacturers for large amounts of ammunition in various calibers. We expect to receive only a few pallets at a time because manufacturers and distributors are rationing the ammo to their customers. As we receive ammo, we will contact customers with oldest orders already in place with the option to purchase whatever we receive at the new prices, cancel the order, or remain on the list for the manufacturer they originally requested. All price increases to CMP will be passed on to the customer. CMP will not be profiting from the increase in prices.
We will continue to accept orders for ammunition, with the understanding that the wait time for customers between placing an order and receiving the ammunition may be anywhere from a few weeks to a few years. Most other retailers are in the same situation as the CMP. We suggest that customers leave their CMP orders in place and not cancel until they are able to purchase ammo elsewhere. CMP customers will be contacted as to pricing and manufacturer before any orders are filled. We do not expect to have any additional information until after the annual SHOT Show in mid-January, when we will meet with all of the ammo manufacturers.
I'd like to think we're continuing on a path where ammo supplies and retail inventories are on track toward pre-panic levels and more supply resiliency. But for those who want to keep shootin' through thick and thin, stocking ahead is a proven practice. Be prepared to ride out future shortages - be they short term or long term.