Officials at the Calgary Zoo say they are “cautiously optimistic” their two giant pandas will be heading home to China very soon.

In May, the Zoo announced it would be sending Er Shun and Da Mao back four years early because the COVID-19 pandemic had disrupted bamboo supply lines.

Each adult giant panda consumes about 40 kilograms of bamboo every day.

Bamboo has been sourced from British Columbia for the past several months but that supply is almost gone.

The Zoo is now sourcing fresh bamboo from a variety of suppliers across North America, something that is an “all-consuming, expensive process.”

Officials announced in August they were concerned for the well being of the pandas as China had not been able to approve international permits because of changes in its import laws and quarantine facilities.

On Friday, the Calgary Zoo shared that international permit approvals are underway, saying staff are hopeful a flight home for the pandas will soon be confirmed.