The National Audio Company — the largest audio cassette tape manufacturer in the U.S. — stated in a recent press release (found in the tweet below) that high-grade gamma ferric oxide is in short supply, as the only factory refining the substance has been under renovations for the better part of the year. This substance is used in the manufacturing of the magnetic tape used in cassettes, and thus production has had to be put on hold momentarily, Pitchfork points out.
Some of the cassette manufacturing people that I've talked to about this haven't gotten this letter. I think it's probably good for all to see.— Hausu Mountain (@HausuMountain) October 9, 2019
SIRI. ALEXA. LEXA. How do I mine high grade gamma ferric oxide from the earth? LEXA! Ferric oxide! with Gamma? PRECIOUS METALS!? SIRI! pic.twitter.com/rCeAImJQqh
This obviously comes as bad news to those benefitting from the tape sale boom seen in recent years — but the National Audio Company has assured customers that it will receive a shipment of ferric oxide at some point this month. By the end of the year, the company hopes to get production back to normal.
Until then, all customers awaiting their cassette orders will be serviced as the industry manages to resupply.