No fries until fall at some of McDonald’s Russian successor restaurants

A customer pays for a meal at the new ‘Vkusno & tochka’ restaurant, which opens after McDonald’s Corp exits from the Russian market, in Moscow, Russia June 12, 2022. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina

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  • This content was produced in Russia, where the law limits coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine

MOSCOW, July 11 (Reuters) – Excitement was on the menu when former McDonald’s restaurants reopened in Russia last month under new management and branding, but the golden-bowed successor to the throne has a problem : a shortage of fries.

McDonald’s left Russia after a Western backlash against Moscow’s military campaign in Ukraine, which included a barrage of economic sanctions, and sold all the restaurants it owned to a local licensee in May.

The new owner, however, is now facing potato supply problems, blaming a poor harvest in Russia and difficulties importing potatoes due to supply chain disruptions.

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Under the new name of Vkusno & tochka, or “Tasty and that’s it”, the restaurants began reopening on June 12 and sold nearly 120,000 burgers that day. Read more

But after customers last week started posting photos of menus without fries, Vkusno & tochka said it would leave fries and potato wedges off the menus of some of the newly opened restaurants until the end of the week. ‘fall.

He said that while he had focused for years on buying local ingredients, it was now “impossible to import from markets that might have become temporary suppliers of potatoes”.

“Potatoes will return fully to the chain’s menu at the start of the next crop year, in the fall of 2022,” he said.

The shortage highlights the challenges facing Russian businesses as sanctions over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine and supply chain disruptions make it harder to import goods.

Vkusno & tochka managing director Oleg Paroev told Reuters last month that “a significant percentage” of ingredients come from abroad. Read more

Despite Vkusno & tochka’s problems, the Russian Ministry of Agriculture said last week that the potato harvest would be larger than last year and that the market was “fully supplied with potatoes, including processed potatoes”.

“The new crop is coming now, which rules out the possibility of a shortage,” he said.

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Reuters reporting; Editing by Kevin Liffey and Susan Fenton

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

About Mohammed B. Hale

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