Toiletries like toothpaste, face wash, and razors are the next victims of inflation as the supply chain crisis slams the retail industry

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Toiletries like toothpaste, face wash, and razors are the next victims of inflation as the supply chain crisis slams the retail industry
The cost of products like Gillette Razors, a brand owned by Procter & Gamble, are on the rise. Newscast/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
  • Procter & Gamble is increasing prices on grooming, skin care, and oral care products.
  • The cost increase is a response to the cost of inflation and supply chain constraints roiling the nation.

Consumers can now add toothpaste and face wash to the rapidly growing list of household products expected to get more expensive in the coming weeks.

Procter & Gamble announced plans to hike up prices on a number of common toiletries, including grooming, skin care, and oral care products, due to the cost of inflation. The bump is a result of several factors tied to the ongoing supply chain crisis roiling the retail industry, including increased material costs for ingredients like resins and chemicals, as well as the skyrocketing prices of freight and transportation.

A representative for P&G wrote in an email to Insider that the specific cost increases and the "timing of these moves are very specific to the category, brand, and sometimes the product form within a brand."

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Speaking to investors on Tuesday, P&G Chief Financial Officer Andrew Schulten said the price spikes are expected to continue into the first half of 2022, and build upon recent cost increases to household goods including products in the baby care, feminine care, adult incontinence, and fabric care categories.

Schulten said P&G will "undoubtedly experience more volatility" and is bracing itself to navigate "cost pressures and continued effects of the global pandemic."

"We believe this is a temporary bottom-line rough patch to grow through, not a reason to reduce investment in the business and not a reason to redesign a strategy that has been working well before and during the COVID crisis," he said on the call.

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According to Schulten, ingredient costs have increased anywhere from 30% to 200% compared to the start of the pandemic in April 2020. Likewise, freight and fuel costs have risen sharply in response to the national labor shortage, leaving a dearth of drivers amid heightened demand for goods.

The US currently has an estimated shortage of 80,000 truck drivers - a record high and an increase of 30% from before the pandemic - Chris Spear, President and CEO of the American Trucking Associations, told CNN Tuesday.

P&G is not alone in falling to the pressures of inflation and supply chain constraints. Unilever, a top competitor of P&G, is also expected to announce price hikes on its quarterly earnings call this Thursday, which is likely to impact everything from toiletries to its expansive food business.

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The conglomerate has already been significantly impacted by the supply chain crisis in recent months, particularly in response to the rising cost of key ingredients like crude, soybean, and palm oils.

"Inflation is impacting us across the full spectrum of input costs, in materials, in packaging and, quite notably, in freight and distribution costs," Unilever's Chief Financial Officer Graeme Pitkethly told investors in June.

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