The franchise that took over McDonald’s locations in Russia is leaving French fries and potato wedges off the menu at some of its sites after a poor potato harvest and supply chain disruptions led to a shortage of the fast-food staple.

Vkusno & Tochka, which is roughly translated from Russian as “tasty and that’s it,” scooped up the 700 eateries that McDonald’s sold after the Chicago-based Big Mac maker pulled up stakes and quit its presence in the country over the invasion of Ukraine.

The new fast food iteration launched with fanfare last month as company executives touted 120,000 burgers that were sold on opening day.

But the brand has been battered after diners posted photos online showing moldy hamburger buns and rotted food that was served in some of their locations.

Last week, customers posted images on social media showing menus without French fries.

The company confirmed that it would not be offering French fries or potato wedges until the fall, Reuters is reporting.

Russian customers of Vkusno & Tochka posted photos online showing menus that didn't offer fries or potato wedges.
Russian customers of Vkusno & Tochka posted photos online showing menus that didn’t offer fries or potato wedges.
REUTERS
The successor restaurant to McDonald's in Russia has run out of French fries.
The successor restaurant to McDonald’s in Russia has run out of French fries.
REUTERS

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

“Potatoes will return to the chain’s menu in full at the beginning of the next harvest year, autumn 2022,” it said.

McDonald's, the Chicago-based Big Mac maker, pulled up stakes and left Russia due to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
McDonald’s, the Chicago-based Big Mac maker, pulled up stakes and left Russia due to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
EPA

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

Vkusno & Tochka’s CEO Oleg Paroev told Reuters last month that “a significant percentage” of ingredients were sourced abroad.

Despite Vkusno & Tochka’s problems, Russia’s agriculture ministry said last week that the potato harvest would be bigger than last year’s and that the market was “fully supplied with potatoes, including processed potatoes”.

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



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