How local bakeries are dealing with a nationwide shortage of cream cheese

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Difficulties in the supply chain are creating a shortage of an important ingredient used in holiday desserts. Across the country, businesses are having a hard time getting their hands on cream cheese.

For companies like Triple Dipple’s in Chillicothe, cream cheese is at the heart of many of their recipes.

“Cream cheese is everything. There is no cheesecake without cream cheese. It’s the main ingredient and it’s the bulk of what we put in our cheesecake, ”said Harreld Webster, owner of Triple Dipple.

As companies like Kraft have announced difficulties keeping cream cheese on the shelves, Webster said his company has been lucky.

“Our supplies assured us they had us covered. They have it in the warehouses, we have it here, we haven’t missed a beat actually, ”said Webster.

At LeBakery in Peoria, co-owner Kevin Palermo said keeping cream cheese production in-house has limited the impact of the shortage.

“Virtually about 90 percent of everything we make is made in-house, from scratch,” Palermo said.

While the shortage of cream cheese itself isn’t the problem, it has been difficult to find the raw ingredients to make it and other baked goods.

“Yeast, flour, wheat, sometimes we have to scramble to even find eggs,” Palermo said.

Despite a few challenges, Palermo said LeBakery is ready to satisfy the community’s sweet tooth.

“Obviously with the holiday season approaching it’s going to be a bit more difficult because people want to buy more in bulk, but I think everything should be okay, we should be fine,” Palermo said.

Webster said that after Christmas, Triple Dipple takes a two-week hiatus. He said he hoped that during this time the cream cheese issues could be resolved and prevent further shortages.


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