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Sriracha hot sauce maker warns of shortage

A chili pepper shortage is hindering the company's ability to produce its products
Plastic bottles of Huy Fong Food Sriracha hot chili sauce in a supermarket aisle

Bottles of the popular Sriracha hot sauce could be hard to find on store shelves this summer.

Southern California-based Huy Fong Inc., told customers in an email earlier this year that it would suspend sales of its famous spicy sauce over the summer due to a shortage of chili peppers.

The company said in its April 19 email that all orders submitted after that date would be fulfilled after Labor Day.

"Unfortunately, this is out of our control and without this essential ingredient we are unable to produce any of our products," the company said.

The company sources its peppers from various farms in California, New Mexico and Mexico, and said weather conditions are affecting the quality of the peppers and deepening the chili pepper shortage. It didn't immediately respond to an email seeking comment Thursday.

Hot temperatures and a historic drought across the U.S. West have been taking a heavy toll on California's agriculture. The U.S. Drought Monitor reported that the whole state was in "severe drought" as of last week, with the Central Valley facing "extreme drought" conditions.

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