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McDonald’s Japan Sales Dip Lacking Fries

Published on Jan 9 2015 7:42 PM in Restaurant

McDonald’s Japan Sales Dip Lacking Fries

McDonald’s Japan business reported same-store sales plunged 21 per cent in December, the 11th straight month of declines after the chain was forced to ration French fries as a labour dispute at US ports crimped supplies of potatoes.

The number of customers fell 14 per cent in the month, while sales per customer dropped by 8 per cent on same-store basis, the chain’s Japanese unit said in a statement to the Tokyo Stock Exchange today. Overall sales were down 21 per cent.

“In spite of various measures we took against the prolonged labour talks at ports on the US West Coast, changes in products including potato fries affected sales in December,” the restaurant chain said in a statement.

McDonald’s Japan airlifted more than 1,000 tonnes of fries and imported some from the ports in the East Coast to cope with the shortage which forced the company to sell only small-sized fries, spokesman Takashi Hasegawa had said. It resumed selling all sizes of fries on 5 January, it said on its website.

US mediators agreed to join labour talks at the West Coast ports, seeking to revive the months-long stalled negotiations between dockworkers and shipping firms, according to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service on 6 January.

The restaurant has already been reeling from a week of food-related complaints from customers, including plastics found in chicken nuggets and chocolate sundae, and a human tooth discovered in fries.

Bloomberg News, edited by Hospitality Ireland

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