An interesting final day on the floor at SHOT Show yesterday, and I am finally getting the hang of this place in terms of size. You still end up walking miles every day. I averaged 4,8 miles a day. On Thursday we interviewed former Navy SEAL and Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, you’ll see that on SOFREP Radio in a couple of days.
Attendees told me that while the crowds were down over pre-COVID shows, the people who attended were there to do business, which they appreciated very much.
Gun Sales Are Brisk, But Ammo Shortages Will Remain Acute.
I was also told that ammunition is getting harder and harder to make domestically. Ammo makers are having to buy primers overseas in places like Italy and the Czech Republic. Furthermore, we no longer make the virgin lead from ore and now rely on recycled lead from old car batteries. As the market moves towards electric cars with batteries made from rare earth metals the stock lead supply will slowly shrink and prices will increase. High demand for gun powder in the civilian market has driven up prices there as well. The military has its sources for ammunition and this takes the first precedence over civilian sales as you might imagine. There has been a rather dramatic increase in gun ownership in the last decade and with it an increased interest in reloaded ammunition which requires black powder.
It is a bad idea for U.S. civilians to have to buy components for ammunition overseas, especially for things like primers. They may not have the same quality controls or regulatory oversight that exists here in the U.S. and if a box of primers blows up in someone’s garage, you will have lots of problems bringing a liability suit in Europe. There is more than one way to skin a cat, and while gun control legislation is unpopular and doesn’t have the votes to pass in Congress, there could be a pivot by gun control groups using regulatory agencies like the EPA to ban ammunition by driving the manufacture of components overseas which a president can then stop the importation of by executive order.