Christmas tree shortage may drive up the price of your tree this year

PHOTO: Christmas trees for sale in an undated stock photo.PlayFlavia Morlachetti/Getty Images
WATCH Christmas tree shortage expected to increase prices

Christmas revelers may have a harder time finding a Christmas tree this year – and may have sticker shock when they do so – because of the economic recession a decade ago.

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Declining Christmas tree sales in 2007, during the Great Recession, led tree growers to plant fewer trees, according to Doug Hundley, a spokesperson for the National Christmas Tree Association, the trade association representing the Christmas tree industry.

PHOTO: Christmas trees for sale in the New York neighborhood of Chelsea. Richard Levine/Corbis via Getty Images
Christmas trees for sale in the New York neighborhood of Chelsea.

PHOTO: Christmas trees for sale in the New York neighborhood of Chelsea. Richard Levine/Corbis via Getty Images
Christmas trees for sale in the New York neighborhood of Chelsea.

“The result, 10 years later, is today's smaller supply,” said Hundley, noting that a 7- or 8-foot Christmas tree takes about 10 years to grow.

“Unfortunately it is happening at a time when the economy is good and demand is high,” he told ABC News. “We cannot manufacture real Christmas trees.”

PHOTO: Workers at an outdoor Christmas tree market prepare Christmas trees for sale.Sean Gallup/Getty Images
Workers at an outdoor Christmas tree market prepare Christmas trees for sale.

The exact increase in price for Christmas trees this year will vary based on the type of tree, its size and the location where the tree is purchased, according to Hundley.

PHOTO:An ornament hangs from a Christmas tree.Pau Barrena/Bloomberg via Getty Images
PHOTO:An ornament hangs from a Christmas tree.

Hundley recommends shopping for a Christmas tree in early December as opposed to later in the month to ensure the stock is still there.

A report published earlier this year by GWD Forestry, a Spain-based sustainable forestry company, said that a combination of factors affecting U.S.-grown Christmas trees means that "the shortage of popular-size Christmas trees will most likely continue through to 2025 at least."

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