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McDonald's Is Experiencing a Shortage of Fries Here

Large fries are temporarily off the menu in this country.

As if ongoing global supply chain woes and the logistical complications of the worsening pandemic weren't bad enough, flooding at a Vancouver port has disrupted shipments of potatoes needed for a beloved menu item: McDonald's fries.

According to Bloomberg, the shipping disruption caused by the flooding will directly impact the supply of fries in Japan. The approximate 2,900 McDonald's restaurants in the major overseas market are now limiting French fry sales by only offering small fries. Medium and large sizes will not be available for many days to come, though the chain has expressed hopes to have supplies restored enough to offer normal sizing by the new year.

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To help deal with the shortage, McDonald's Holdings Company Japan is turning to the extreme measure of using flights to deliver fries, according to The New York Post. The company is also offering an approximate 44-cent discount on meals that are supposed to come with large or medium-sized French fries.

The potatoes used to make French fries served in McDonald's restaurants in Japan are entirely grown in North America. This is not the first time there has been a potato shortage that has limited the supply of fries available to the global market. In 2019, poor growing weather caused a nearly 6% reduction in total pounds of potatoes harvested in North America, according to NPR. Some farmers lost as much as a third of their potato crops that year.

This year, the harvest was plentiful and as soon as shipping is restored to normal, the French fry shortage in Japan will end. Already the disruption caused by the flooding and landslides in the Vancouver area is being mitigated, via Reuters, so hopefully, the prediction of a one-week shortage will prove to be accurate.

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Steven John
Steven John is a freelancer writer for Eat This, Not That! based just outside New York City. Read more about Steven