No matter what type of firearm you’re planning to take afield this fall, be prepared for sticker shock when you hit your favorite sporting goods store in coming weeks.
The ammunition business is feeling a major pinch because of the rising price of global commodities such as copper, brass, nickel, steel and most notably, lead.
The price increases began after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, then were compounded by a double whammy: the war in Iraq, which pushed up overall demand, and growing industrial powers such as China, which bid up the cost of certain metal and raw materials.
Some rounds, such as .223 cal., used in the M-16 and AR-15, have become increasingly difficult to find in the civilian market. Supplies of .308 cartridges also have tightened.
Many rifle cartridges currently cost 10 percent more than a year ago--while others have more than doubled in price.
A major player in the industry—Remington—had an 8 percent jump in ammo pricing on June 1. Just weeks ago, it announced an additional 10 to 15 percent price increase (dependent on ammunition type), effective October 1.
And brace yourself, because there’s more to come. In a letter to dealers, Remington vice president of marketing and sales, John Dwyer, wrote, “Based on our current assessment of metals pricing for the remainder of 2007, we anticipate an additional 12-percent across-the-board increase on all ammunition and components effective January 1, 2008.”