Mardi Gras supply sales up, but shipping delays present challenge for sellers
BATON ROUGE - Sales of Mardi Gras supplies are beginning to bounce back for the first time since the start of the pandemic, but supply chain issues have created new challenges for sellers.
Nelson Maddox, the owner of Parties Start Here, says sales are up now that Mardi Gras festivities are making a comeback. The last two years of canceled parades have devastated his business.
“St. Patrick's Day was canceled March the 17th, two days before the parade. It’s been a nightmare since then," Maddox said. "If we don't have [Mardi Gras] this year, it's going to be detrimental."
Being that the majority of his product is made overseas, Maddox says shipping delays have thrown yet another challenge his way.
“The biggest problem I’m having now is still getting the products here from Asia. I’m still waiting on two containers to get here. One’s locked up in customs in Houston...Normally I have all of my products in here by September 1st. Here it is middle of January, and we still don’t have the first container here," Maddox said.
If the trend continues, he expects his shelves will be empty by St. Patrick's Day. That's why he's encouraging shoppers to get their parade supplies as early as possible to beat the rush.
“Shop early, shop now, and take your product because it’s going to be a nightmare wherever you go. I’m hearing from my competitors in New Orleans, they’re all in the same boat. Everybody’s running low," Maddox said.
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