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Food by VICE

Wing Night Could Become a Thing of the Past as Chicken Prices Rise

Now, the cruel year of 2017 is coming for our cheap drumsticks.

by Alex Swerdloff
Aug 2 2017, 2:00pm

Photo via Flickr user esimpraim

Parts of Brooklyn are now more expensive than Manhattan. A vintage pair of Levi's can cost a cool $50,000. And chicken wings are slowly becoming a luxury item.

What is the world coming to?

Henceforth, wing night may call for Cristal instead of $2 beers, and your run-of-the-mill blue cheese will have to be replaced by Clawson Stilton Gold with gold leaf—all because the price of the wing of the chicken is now at a record high.

Chefs are finding that they are paying over a dollar more per pound of wings than they were just a year ago. Over the past few months, prices have risen more than 60 percent. The ten-cent wing may very well be going the way of the dodo bird.

READ MORE: The MUNCHIES Guide to Chicken Wings

Buffalo Wild Wings is a chain of restaurants that specializes in chicken wings, and right now, they're feeling some significant pain. Profits have plummeted 63 percent in the second quarter of 2017. The company cites "historically high wing costs" and has taken to promoting something called "boneless chicken wings"—which actually aren't whole chicken wings at all—they're basically wing-sized chicken nuggets doused in sauce. (Seriously? Everyone knows that one of the greatest joys of wing night is gnawing through the bizarre mixture of bones, sinew, and skin found in a proper wing.)

Life may never be the same, friends. This is all happening because demand for wings is at historically high levels. Sure, around the Super Bowl everyone expects prices to rise: According to the National Chicken Council, Americans eat 1.33 billion wings over Super Bowl weekend. But this year, demand has remained high despite the usual plummet after Super Bowl.

READ MORE: Hooter's Will Give You Free Wings If You Destroy a Photo of Your Ex on Valentine's Day

In fact, chicken prices in general are on the rise, thanks to consumers shifting away from red meat. Fast food restaurants have been rushing in to take advantage of this trend with more and more chicken sandwich offerings. But now, everyone who makes a living serving the humble chicken is suffering.

Can anything ever replace wing night? We think not. But Taco Tuesday may just have to try.