Helium shortage impacting Valentine’s sales


Valentine’s Day is already a hectic time for local shops that sell flowers, candy and balloons. However, this holiday presents a new set of challenges due to a shortage of helium. 

With the worldwide helium shortage, companies are scrambling to find the supply, to meet their customers demands. 

Robby Bunch, owner of Balloons by the Bunch, said he calls each Monday to see if he can get a supply of helium. 

“You might not be seeing a balloon in 20 years because of the helium,” Bunch said.

Bunch said because of this shortage another local party store has shutdown. 

“Party Plus is out of business,  it’s crazy,” Bunch said. 

Bunch said the shortage is especially hard on local shops because they are not under contract with helium companies. 

“The company that supplied me since 1980 had to quit supplying me because I didn’t have a contract,” Bunch said. 

Although larger corporations may get a steadier supply, Nancy Sharp with United said the shortage has still effected things.  

“This year I believe we ordered more than 300 tanks of helium,” Sharp said.  “We’d prefer at this point in the year to have 450.” 

Even though companies are making do for now, Bunch said he does not think balloons will remain a staple of parties for too much longer. 

“I think it’s going to be a thing of the past,” Bunch said. 

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