News & Opinion | December 15, 2020 11:38 am

Due to Shortage, Christmas Trees Are Selling for as Much as $2,000

That Charlie Brown tree doesn't sound so bad now

christmas trees on sidewalk
A man walks his dog through a Christmas tree lot on December 14, 2020 in New York City.
John Lamparski/Getty Images

With everyone stuck at home for the holidays this year and desperately in need of a little seasonal cheer, demand for Christmas trees is at an all-time high, and for many, the fake plastic kind just won’t do. But as a new Wall Street Journal piece points out, the supply hasn’t exactly been able to meet that demand, and a worldwide Christmas tree shortage has led to prices soaring over $2,000.

An eight-foot Noble Fir in Hong Kong will run you $2,167, while six-foot trees there are currently selling for about $1,500 — seven to eight times what they sold for a year ago. Knee-high bundles of branches shaped to look like a small tree are selling for $100. Elsewhere, prices are slightly less outrageous but the problem persists: in the U.S., people are paying more money for inferior quality trees, and the U.K. has been forced to import trees from elsewhere in Europe due to low supply.

As the Journal points out, the pandemic has exacerbated the issue, but the Christmas tree shortage has been a long time coming: “The Christmas tree shortage has its roots in the global recession of more than a decade ago,” the publication notes. “During those years, a glut of Christmas trees caused prices to tumble, and some farmers planted fewer or switched to other kinds of crops. Other farms just closed. Wild fires on the West Coast also wiped out a number of Christmas tree farms.”

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