It wasn’t that long ago that you could walk into any surplus store or decent gun show and buy stacks of real surplus ammo cans. In fact, resellers where often competing to have the lowest price at the gun show and offering bulk discounts.
Prices on ammo cans have climbed steadily over the years and the explanations for why this is happening varies depending on who you ask. I’ve heard theories as tame as they are being crushed and as conspiratorial as the Obama administration doesn’t want people to be able to easily store ammo long term (which is ridiculous on a number of levels).
Recently, Old Grouch’s Military Surplus weighed in with some actual facts on why there are fewer real ammo cans available and how poor quality, overseas made cans are flooding the market. You can read more in their newsletter. If you are in the market for ammo cans, I suggest you take some caution to ensure you receive actual surplus cans.