HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Supply chain issues have contributed to low stocks of baby formula and other hygiene products during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, a new shortage is sneaking up on women across the state.

Tampons are the most recent items falling victim to shortages.

Rising costs of materials, barriers to transportation and inflation are all contributing factors. The demand for this product hasn’t decreased though. So, until suppliers can catch up, women may have to use other alternatives.

While the shortage is currently centralized on tampons, experts say other products with similar materials could soon be affected.

Tampons use raw materials like cotton, rayon, and plastic which have been in shorter supply. Cotton fertilizer supply has also dwindled from the war between Russia and Ukraine.

Dr. Nicholas Loyd, Director of the Center for Management and Economic Research at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, says if the Defense Protection Act is enacted it could help.

Loyd says, “In general, the bigger supply chain concept is the less reliant you can be on a one-source supplier, and when that source is overseas…that adds to the risk. The more local, domesticated, and decentralized…your supply base system reflects where you can be to challenges when they pop up.”

Walgreens and CVS have said they are aware of the shortage in some areas. Both companies say they’re working with their suppliers to ensure they can restock as soon as possible.