Ordering the perfect side for your Big Mac or Chicken McNuggets just got a little more difficult, because McDonald's is now facing a french fry shortage. The Golden Arches announced Tuesday that due to supply chain issues, a potato shortage has prompted them to start rationing the sale of their beloved crispy, golden french fries. Thankfully for McDonald's fans stateside, the issue does not currently impact the U.S., with the French fry shortage currently only impacting McDonald's Japan.
The announcement was made by McDonald's Japan CEO Tamotsu Hiiro, who explained in the press release, according to CNN, that the potato shortage is due to floods in Canada. British Columbia was recently faced with devastating flooding, with McDonald's Japan noting that "due to large-scale flooding near the Port of Vancouver ... and the global supply chain crunch caused by the coronavirus pandemic, there are delays in the supply of potatoes." As a result, McDonald's locations in Japan are struggling to obtain enough potatoes to keep up with the demand.
The potato shortage has now resulted in a McDonald's French fry shortage, with the Golden Arches responding to the shortage by temporarily limiting the sale of fries at McDonald's Japan locations. From Friday, Dec. 24 until Thursday, Dec. 30, the Golden Arches will only sell small portions of its french fries in Japan as it seeks alternative measures such as arranging airmail," to continue to serve the "McDonald's Potato." McDonald's Japan "sincerely" apologized "for this inconvenience to all."
"McDonald's Japan will temporarily limit sales of Medium- and Large-sized French Fries as a proactive measure to ensure customers can continue to enjoy McDonald's French Fries," McDonald's confirmed in a statement to the BBC. "Customers will still be able to order Small-sized French Fries at all of our restaurants. To date, there have been no breaks in supply."
The chain previously suffered a similar French fry shortage in December 2014 due to a labor dispute between 20,000 dockworkers, terminal operators and shipping lines at 29 ports on the west coast of the U.S. In response McDonald's Japan took the emergency step of only selling small portions of French fries while it flew in 1,000 tons of potatoes.
While McDonald's lovers in Japan will unfortunately be without the chain's fan-favorite French fries, they are being treated to an exclusive treat. The Gracoro Burger – featuring a patty that is actually a croquette filled with shrimp and macaroni in a creamy white sauce, all packed into a crispy-friend panko shell – officially returned to menus this month. The burger, which was first introduced in 1993, is available exclusively in Japan for a limited time only.