Black Friday 2021 holiday shoppers could battle empty shelves, toy expert warns

FAN Editor

The toy industry is being impacted by the shipping crisis in a big way, according to The Toy Insider editor-in-chief Marissa Silva.

“We’re on about a six to eight-week delay for a lot of products,” Silva told FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo. “So come Black Friday, there’s not going to be much left on the shelves.”

Silva joined “Mornings with Maria” Friday advising parents to budget more for toys this year and do their holiday shopping right now.

The toy industry is “really reliant” on importing goods, Silva noted, with 80% of toys being made in China. But ongoing supply chain disruptions and a microchip shortage is jeopardizing stores’ inventory.

HOLIDAY SHOPPING SEASON WILL FACE SUPPLY CHAIN CHALLENGES, EXPERT WARNS

“Simple things like action figures could be going up $2 or $3, and then bigger toys like playsets, doll houses, ride-ons, you can see up to a 10% increase on toys like that this year, so definitely leave some more room in the budget,” Silva said.

Some of the hottest toys this year are what Silva calls “going viral,” or toys inspired by popular trends on TikTok and YouTube.

“All the characters kids are seeing on YouTube channels that they love, all of the little fidget toys that are going crazy viral on TikTok, those are going to be really, really big this year,” she said.

With retail sales up 21% from this time two years ago, Silva assured that stores are working hard to keep shelves stocked amid rising demand.

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But higher prices and less inventory might be inevitable, Silva warned.

“It remains to be seen how the stock will be once we get past Black Friday,” she posed, “but one thing is for sure, that consumers are definitely going to feel the effects of what’s going on in the toy industry.”

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