Tampon shortage sparks growing concern

NOW: Tampon shortage sparks growing concern

MILWAUKEE (CBS) --- Supply chain issues continue to impact products on store shelves. Tampons are now becoming harder to get ahold of in some places and prices are rising.

The tampon shortage is a nationwide problem that's already sparking concern locally.

Meagan Johnson is the founder at Milwaukee Diaper Mission. Through social services agencies, the organization distributes diapers to families in need, but also has a period program.

Johnson says the program was started after recognizing there was a need for more community resources to provide period supplies.

"Two in five menstruators in the U.S. struggle to afford period products," said Johnson.

Milwaukee Diaper Mission puts together period kits to distribute items such as tampons and pads to families in need. "Half the population menstruates, and many are already struggling to afford period supplies," said Johnson.

Now there's a national shortage of tampons, and stores across the U.S. are reporting low shipments.

Consumer experts say the limited stock is likely the result of staffing issues and rising costs of materials and shipping.

"Right now we're okay, but I am concerned that if the shortage continues that we will be struggling to supply our community with these much-needed items," said Johnson.

Johnson says they're always accepting donations for those who want to help, and until tampon concerns come to an end, there are other options for those in need.

"We also offer a reusable period kit in addition to our disposable options...it includes cloth pads, period underwear and a menstrual cup. So, if people are interested in trying, they can ask for those through our distribution partners," she said.

Retailers say they expect the shortage will be temporary, but even when shipments return to normal, prices will be higher.

Inflation has led to a price increase of nearly 10% for a box of tampons in the last year.

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