High demand for firearms and ammunition during the early months of 2013 have led to a visible scarcity on the shelves of gun shops around the country. While American manufacturers are increasing production to keep dealers stocked, foreign ammo makers are making the best of the opportunity. According to the Daily Caller, data from the Department of Commerce show that imports of ammunition had nearly doubled in the first two months of the year. Over 457 million imported cartridges arrived in American markets during January and February, along with 24 million shotgun shells.

“Just as American-based manufacturers have been working hard to meet the demand, foreign companies saw the increased demand and increased their shipments as a result,” the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Mike Bazinet told Outdoor Hub. “It’s a situation of being responsive to the market.”

Business is going so well that Philippines-based Armscor International, which owns the Rock Island Armory brand, will be expanding its production facilities inside the United States.

“We are thrilled with the demand for our Rock Island Armory branded products in the US,” said Martin Tuason, CEO of Armscor International and Rock Island Armory. “Our new facility will give us the opportunity to increase production and reduce delivery timelines. This marks our third facility in the United States and represents a critical progression in growing our markets in North America.”

Armscor International announced earlier this month that it will be building a new factory in Pahrump, Nevada to anchor production for Rock Island Armory products.

Despite the high number of imports and the already increased production by American manufacturers, store owners are still finding it hard to keep customers happy.

“Ammunition is in short supply at retail,” Bazinet said. “We hear from consumers and we hear from law enforcement that they are experiencing these shortages in popular calibers, as expected. We have been in touch with our members, some of whom are manufacturers and they tell us they have been working their facilities very hard, often 24 hours, seven days a week to meet this demand. ”

Manufacturers like Hornady have added equipment and personnel at their plants in order to ramp up production in a safe and controlled manner. While experts differ on when the shortage will end, Bazinet was optimistic about the light at the end of the tunnel.

“It’s a classic supply and demand imbalance that eventually will abate, and we have heard reports that it is easing in some areas,” he said. “For the time being it is a reality out there.”

Image from SoulRider.222 on the flickr Creative Commons

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10 thoughts on “Imported Ammunition Floods Starved American Markets

  1. If the American ammo company’s won’t ramp up for the ammo shortage then someone needs to. Hornady added two machines that was it. The other have done nothing. The shortage is real bad now since we have so many new shooter, but it has been bad for the last 3 or four years. I do not know why the manufactures have not added more lines.

  2. @ rttlsnkrch – Scuttlebutt (pretty decent insider info) says since ATK owns far too much of the ammo making plants in America, that they’re taking their marching orders from and for the District of Corruption before all other considerations. If you own most of the cookies, there is nothing that states how or even if you should share outside of morally-inspired Biblical teachings. ATK is even scaling back some production capabilites.

    In today’s money & greed-driven immoral society that is rapidly growing like a malignancy…SCREW YOU…I GET MINE…”So what does it matter”?, as Mz Clinton spoke a different light is cast. You can make excuses and complain about the country of origin where available wares are coming from until the last cow comes home and the fat lady sings.

    Don’t forget American dockworkers, motor freight drivers along with the US rail systems and all that efforts of the men and women that handle, transfer and load/unload and sell these or any foreign commodities for their livelihoods. The welfare of their families hangs in the balance. They depend upon you and me plus market demands in having and keeping these very important J O B s!

    I’d rather buy 100% MADE IN THE USA, but I bet a brief check around anyone’s home will show we all own and use foreign-made goods. By the way, what brand of distilled petroleum do you burn in your company or personal vehicle? Damn few are truly American…100% Virgin-pure American crude based. Care to make a wager about what we’d find that indicates you suffered a moment of disgust versus your true path indicator of sure…send more USDs overseas.

    This Republic is in turmoil and you’re worried about where the round you bought that saves your, a family member’s or some other innocent’s life came from. I’m empathetic to supporting the USofA, but common sense prevails.

    USAF Retired

    1. most of ATK’s gubmint production is at Lake City Arsenal…Winchester makes a substantial amount of the contract ammo as well.

      Today with the contract purchases of DHS and the military; you take what you can get. The one drawbakc to most of the imported ammunition is that it is dirty; it is not corrosive, just burns dirty. Most of it is accurate and runs well in 90% of the firearms on the market today.

      rttlsnkrch…take your false concern for US jobs and stick up your 4th point of contact

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