Definition of shortage in English:



  • A state or situation in which something needed cannot be obtained in sufficient amounts.

    ‘a shortage of hard cash’
    as modifier ‘food shortages’
    • ‘Food and other shortages have led to dissatisfaction among the population at large.’
    • ‘In many areas civilians are struggling with serious shortages of food, medicine and clean water.’
    • ‘Food shortages were a problem both for natives and refugees at the end of the war.’
    • ‘Soon there was a great shortage of food, and there was no more medicine, and no more clothing.’
    • ‘Similarly, there are a number of countries facing severe food shortages at the moment.’
    • ‘They made fields untillable and led to food shortages that continue to this day.’
    • ‘They are suffering from acute shortages of food, medicine and clean water.’
    • ‘During the Italian occupation, there was again a food shortage for about five years.’
    • ‘In the face of low pay and staff shortages, awards may seem cold comfort.’
    • ‘There were food shortages, since people from unaffected areas did not have anything to eat either.’
    • ‘Up to three million people are facing chronic food shortages in the coming months.’
    • ‘Demand has been driven by shortages of property and land to develop in these areas.’
    • ‘Part two of my contingency plan addresses the food shortage caused by panic buying.’
    • ‘Yet shortages did not mean that Soviet citizens were indifferent to consumption.’
    • ‘At the same time, millions of people are facing starvation because of food shortages.’
    • ‘There are many parts of the world where the shortage of food lasts for years, not just for one.’
    • ‘Here individuals in villages can deal with localized shortages by drawing on foods that have been stored.’
    • ‘Apart from that, the troops achieved their aims despite shortages of arms and poor food.’
    • ‘She said there were still many food shortages because of the disruption to supplies.’
    • ‘This shortage of funds means many schools will have to set deficit budgets for the coming year.’
    scarcity, sparseness, sparsity, dearth, paucity, poverty, insufficiency, deficiency, inadequacy, famine, lack, want, meagreness, scantiness, limitedness, restrictedness, deficit, shortfall, rarity, rareness
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