The Pandemic Has Caused a National Surplus in Chicken Wings That May Go to Waste, and We Absolutely Should Not Stand for It

Illustration for article titled The Pandemic Has Caused a National Surplus in Chicken Wings That May Go to Waste, and We Absolutely Should Not Stand for It
Photo: Paul J. Richards (AFP/Getty Images)

A certain basketball tournament got canceled causing a nationwide surplus of chicken wings and...that might just be the blackest lede I’ve ever written.


Here’s what happened according to the Washington Post:

The NCAA basketball tournament is the second of two big annual events for chicken wings. (The first is the Super Bowl.) Wing prices and production run in predictable cycles each year, ramping up for the NFL playoffs and championship game in early February, then again for college basketball’s frenzied tournament a month and a half later.

But with society in lock down because of the novel coronavirus and the NCAA tournament canceled, that’s left a whole bunch of wings lying around, and now they’ve flooded the market. Ergo, we have a giant national surplus of chicken wings.

The Post reports that chicken wings, which y’all know are usually expensive AF, are currently the cheapest they’ve been since 9/11, selling for half the nearly $2 per pound price they sold for on Super Bowl weekend, according to U.S. Agriculture Department data.

This leaves not much to say except:


If you’re anything like me, you’ve already assembled a ragtag bunch of poultry consumption enthusiasts and are drafting strategic plans to raid local grocery stores in a selfless effort to save the chicken wing industry from certain doom in a mission called, “Operation: Lemon-Pepper Wet.”


Obviously we at The Root are not suggesting that this is one of those “good problems” that should be taken advantage of in times of crisis. We’re also not looking to get your mouths watering by pointing out all of the delectable ways chicken wings can be prepared. Most importantly, no one is trying to sway your appetite by pointing out delicious wing flavors such as honey garlic, Buffalo, Korean barbecue, lemon-pepper (and I can not stress this enough) WET (because no one trusts your dry rub ass niggas), garlic ranch, General Tso’s, crispy parmesan and mango habanero.


We’re merely suggesting that in this time of great tragedy, chicken wings going to waste is an issue we don’t need to be burdened with. This is about not letting the poultry production industry down. After all, according to the Post, poultry producers sold 1.24 million pounds of wings in the week they thought the NCAA tournament was happening. Last week, they sold only 433,000 pounds.

These unsung heroes who provide us with enough “drums vs. flats” debate inspiration to last nine quarantines are now the ones who need saving. To not do so would be a slap in the face to chicken wing consumers all over the world.


I mean, except for all you heathenistic motherfuckers who leave hella meat on the bones when you throw them away. Seriously, fuck y’all.

Zack Linly is a poet, performer, freelance writer, blogger and grown man lover of cartoons



Oh what a joyful day it would be if they could distribute them in bags of DRUMS only or FLATS only. #TeamFlats !!