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Pumpkin pie at risk? There's a shortage of canned filling

October 9, 2009 |  5:11 pm


If you were planning on practicing your pumpkin pie making skills ahead of Thanksgiving, you might be foiled. There's a national shortage of canned pumpkin and pie filling, a result of poor weather that reduced last year's crop.

Shoppers report finding bare shelves, and the supermarkets say that they have been put on an "allocation," or quota, system by Libby's, a division of food giant Nestle that controls more than 80% of the canned pumpkin market.

Libby's typically uses surpluses from the previous year to stock store shelves during September and October, when the annual pumpkin harvest gets underway. Wet conditions during last year's growing season left canners without a surplus this year, said Roz O'Hearn, a Libby's spokeswoman.

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