A Stevensville ammunition company is feeling the heat of what they call an election year panic. They say the demand for ammo has more than tripled this year, as people worry about what the election will bring.
Darren Newsome founded Bitterroot Valley Ammunition and Components (BVAC) 25 years ago. His company specializes in producing small caliber ammunition products for the public and other companies. He said he's never seen anything like this.
?We've seen everybody all the manufactures ordering more than they usually order and we're like, something's going on,? said Newsome.
Newsome calls the jump in sales "panic buying" and says it's expected during an election year, when people worry about what's next for the country. But he said those anxious buyers started a little earlier than he had planned for.
?We're seeing it on the consumer side, they're buying a lot more than they usually do, we have people that usually don't buy ammo, buying ammo,? he said.
Newsome's company supplies ammo to people across the country. He said it's not just Montanans after some rounds. He talked with other suppliers at a trade show in Tulsa, Oklahoma with the same high demand for ammo.
Newsome said a lot of the panic buying comes from a bad economy. ?I had a guy at the show, I think he bought like 10,000 rounds and paid us cash. He's like I'd rather have the ammo than this paper in my wallet.?
BVAC manufactures about a half million rounds a day, six days a week, and Newsome says that's just not enough. ?We wish we could do more, but we're doing as much as we can,? he said.
But there is an upside to the problem, ?The more people we can hire in an economy like this, it's good,? said Newsome.
And he expects his business to continue to be successful as the election nears.
?Depending on which way the election goes, we're already getting prepared for the next 4 years to be record numbers.?