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Helium Shortage

Helium Shortage

You may have heard whisperings, or maybe even shouts from your fellow balloon professionals: "Helium prices sure have risen!” or, “My supplier can’t even get helium!”. If you are purchasing helium, don't fret. Preparation is the key to success. With a bit of planning and foresight, you can absolutely minimize the impact of a potential helium supply shortage. This article will provide a brief overview on the helium shortage, and give some potential solutions for navigating it. 

Is There A Helium Shortage?

The short answer to this question is yes, but the helium shortage isn't quite what it seems at first glance. The helium shortages are not yet widespread. They are, however, impacting certain regions of the country.

Where does helium come from?

One of the most abundant gasses in space, helium is a product of fusion reactions, which are the chemical reactions that fuel the stars. On earth, naturally-occurring helium is created when radioactive elements decay and turn into other elements. The helium created is eventually emitted into the atmosphere and rises until it goes to space. 

How is helium produced?

After being emitted from chemical processes deep inside the earth's crust, helium gets into natural gas and oil before making it to the earth's atmosphere. Commercial helium is processed by separating the raw helium from extracted oil and natural gas. 

Why is there a helium shortage?

Helium isn't in every oil or natural gas field. Currently, it is becoming more difficult to find natural gas fields that have high amounts of helium, which in turn makes helium more costly to produce. For those who rely on helium for commercial reasons, this isn't was worrying as it seems. Extraction and processing methods are rapidly advancing, leading to innovative ways to extract and process helium. 

 

Navigating The Helium Shortage No Helium No Problem

How to Prepare

To help you stay ready and in the know, we’ve listed a few ways to keep on top of your game when helium resources are unpredictable. Try some of the following: 

  • Order replacement helium tanks well in advance.
  • Offer your customers air-filled solutions. Check out burton + BURTON’s growing catalog of complementary instructional videos and recipes located in our Education Center. You can also find helpful videos by subscribing to our YouTube Channel.
  • Make sure your balloon decorator contract includes a disclaimer: some products may not be available at the time of the event due to helium shortages. Keep yourself covered and offer a backup plan if your client still has his or her heart set on helium-filled designs.
  • Showcase inflated balloons in your store, but keep them air-filled! Customers will want to see the wide variety of air-filled designs you are able to create. This is your chance to showcase your skills and talents. Make sure to have ready a portfolio illustrating examples of large-scale air-filled décoir. These designs stay inflated much longer than a helium-filled bouquet—a great value-added bonus to your customers!
  • This is your chance to up-sell! A customer who may normally just purchase several helium-filled bouquets may now upgrade to an air-filled garland or column when shown the many exciting possibilities.
  • Clik-Clik™ magnets could be your new best friend! Hanging designs are all the rage. Shop Clik-Clik’s range of products.
  • Utilize a base specifically made for air-filled designs!
  • Call your b + B® sales rep! They can provide a list of helium sources nearby.

Remember, even during helium shortages, a balloon business can be highly profitable. Be sure to prepare your arsenal of exciting air-filled solutions and partner with a wholesaler dedicated to your success

Helium Shortage Great Balloon Sculptures With No Helium