McDonald's French Fry Shortage Isn't Just Impacting Japan Now

Grabbing an order of golden crisp French fries from McDonald's is getting a lot more difficult amid the chain's ongoing and growing French fry shortage. Just weeks after McDonald's Japan was forced to ration the sale of French fries due to an ongoing potato shortage, the chain has been forced to pull large fries from the menu in Malaysia.

McDonald's Malaysia announced the menu change on social media on Monday, Jan. 24, confirming that its restaurants in the region "are facing a fry-tening supply crunch on French Fries." As a result of the shortage, customers will no longer be able to order large fries, though they can "still enjoy your favourite meals and fries in Medium size." Dubbing it a "sacri-fries," McDonald's Malaysia promised that large fires will "be back before you know it," though the chain did not indicate when customers could possibly resume ordering large fries.

The decision to temporarily pull large fries from the menu followed the December decision from McDonald's Japan to begin rationing fries. Although the rationing, during which only small orders of fries were available, was only supposed to last through Dec. 30, it has continued and is set to last at least through January. McDonald's Japan cited "delays in the supply of potatoes" caused by flooding near the Port of Vancouver in Canada.

According to a Jan. 8 report from The Washington Post, there is an ongoing potato shortage currently impacting large portions of the world, with potatoes "becoming unevenly available in some countries and fast-food chains because of a confluence of factors." The outlet noted that the global potato supply has been impacted due to a number of issues, including "pandemic-related supply chain issues" and weather-related issues. The outlet also noted that "Japan has more than 3,000 McDonald's franchises, and relies on potatoes grown in the United States and sent by ship from North America."


Potatoes are not the only menu item in short supply, however. KFC earlier in January forced to remove several items from the menu at KFC locations across Australia due to a chicken shortage. Customers heading to their local KFCs in Australia were met with a sign reading, "due to supplier issues, we have no original chicken, zingers, fillets or wings. Please refer to sold-out stickers for available items." In a statement, KFC said "our supply chain & workforce has been impacted by COVID-19," promising that "we're doing all we can to get back to fryin' everyone's faves as soon as possible."