Skip to main content

Retailers Face Holiday Whipped Cream Shortage

Grocery retailers should be prepared for a shortage of canned whipped toppings as shoppers come in to stock up for their holiday tables.

The shortage of products such as Conagra’s Reddi-wip can be blamed on an explosion last summer at a Florida plant that produces nitrous oxide, a propellant for aerosol toppings, according to published reports.

Lanie Friedman, spokeswoman for Chicago-based Conagra Brands, told the Chicago Tribune that stores still have the product in stock, but supplies may be limited in the peak holiday season.

"It's in stores now, but we're encouraging people to buy it early," Friedman told the Tribune. "There will be a shortage if people buy at the typical levels during the holidays."

Reddi-wip is the leading aerosol whipped topping, with more than $278 million in sales for the year ending Nov. 27, according to sales data from Chicago-based market researcher IRI. The shortage also impacts such products as the spray versions of Cool Whip, made by Kraft Heinz.

The August explosion at the Airgas-owned Nitrous Oxide Corp. facility in Cantonment, Fla., killed one employee, limited the plant’s output indefinitely, according to published reports. Nitrous oxide is also used for medical purposes, which have been given priority over food use in backup supplies.


This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds