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An Honest Answer on Ammo Availability

September 25, 2013
By Bill Waugaman - OVO Staff Writer , Ohio Valley Outdoors

Deer season is just two months away giving me plenty of time to get my new Weatherby Vanguard Series 2 in .308 sighted in and ready to go. My typical method for sighting in a rifle is to start by bore-sighting, shoot at 25 yards to get a better point of impact, move out to 50-75 yards for further adjustments, and then finally to 100 yards. Up to this point, I typically use the least expensive ammunition available because it's easy to go through a box or two. Once the rifle is on the paper at 100 yards, it's time to get serious with the same ammo that I will be using for hunting.

Over the years, I have seen substantial differences in the point of impact from one cartridge to another using the same rifle. I believe the final sighting in of a rifle should be done with the exact same cartridge being used for hunting. For me, I really like the Hornady SST Superformance ammunition for deer. In checking at nearly every local gun shop and sporting goods store, it's obvious other hunters share the same opinion. Everyone was sold out. Checking the major online ammo retailers, the same was true sold out, backordered, etc. To get a better understanding of what was happening, I went right to the source Hornady's website (www.hornady.com).

In browsing their website, I ran across some honest information. It is probably one of the best statements I have read about ammunition availability. My contact at Hornady gave permission to reprint this statement

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Product Availability Update Hornady Makes Plans to Increase Production Volume

For over half a year, Hornady Manufacturing, along with the rest of the shooting sports industry, has experienced an unbelievable spike in demand. This dramatic increase in demand is unprecedented. As stated earlier this year in our Product Availability FAQ we have been continuously growing for a number of years; adding people, equipment and manufacturing space as rapidly as we can. We are producing and shipping product at record levels and are continually looking to grow and improve our ability to fulfill orders. But the current state of the industry is such that our increase in shipments this year is overshadowed by a 200% increase in demand.

One area that we have identified that will enable us to increase production, is the minimization of machinery downtime. The largest period of downtime our machines experience is during change over and retooling to convert a machine from manufacturing one bullet or cartridge to another. Under normal market conditions, we can keep the supply chain full by making popular items on a regular basis and keeping specialty or less-used products on a seasonal basis. However, with demand at record levels, it has become difficult to justify shutting down a machine to change it over to produce a product of less demand. Therefore, we are temporarily suspending some items in order to focus our efforts on the most popular and highest demand products and ship more total product.

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Hornady has responded to the recent demand of ammunition.

We realize that many of the suspended items are going to disappoint some of our customers. We have painstakingly reviewed our order status and order history and unfortunately had to make some tough decisions. It wasn't easy, but we know that we will do a better job of servicing the industry as a whole by focusing on the items of highest demand.

We are not alone; this is effectively already happening throughout our industry, but is accomplished through selective manufacture with no notification to the industry. We are simply making every effort to be up-front about our plans to maximize production.

Again, this is only temporary. This is not a permanent suspension. We will continue to push as hard as we can to meet the demand of our industry and will produce our full catalog of items as soon as we can. Please know that nobody wants to produce more and get our product to into your hands more than we do.

Fact Box

"Hornady Makes Plans to Increase Production Volume"

And lastly, we feel compelled to address some of the conspiracy theories that we have seen posted. NO, this is not a conspiracy effort to shape the industry, nor is it controlled by the government. We are simply being forthright about our manufacturing plans and our efforts to supply MORE product to the very hungry shooting sports industry.

We truly appreciate your patience during this period of time. Thank you for your understanding.

The Team at Hornady

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