- Hundreds of KFC stores in the UK remain shut days after the company experienced a nationwide chicken shortage.
- New distributors working for KFC have been unable to get enough chicken to 750 of the 900 KFCs in Britain.
- Outraged customers have been calling police and members of parliament to complain.
- In response, officers suggested that closed chicken shops are not their problem.
Angry chicken fans in Britain have been reporting KFC to the police because hundreds of their stores ran out of chicken.
As many as 450 branches across the UK are shut for a fourth day after a change of distributors led to a nationwide chicken shortage for the company.
Others are open with severely limited menus, including one restaurant in Bristol which could only offer BBQ beans, lettuce and popcorn chicken.
Police forces in Tower Hamlets, London, and Whitefield, Manchester, have tweeted their frustration at being dragged into KFC’s crisis, which they explained was not an issue for them.
Tower Hamlets MPS said: “It is not a police matter if your favourite eatery is not serving the menu that you desire.”
Please do not contact us about the #KFCCrisis – it is not a police matter if your favourite eatery is not serving the menu that you desire.
— Tower Hamlets Police (@MPSTowerHam) February 20, 2018
Some frustrated customers have also been contacting their members of parliament in hope of a political solution.
Neil Coyle, an MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark in south London, wrote on Monday:
— Neil Coyle (@coyleneil) February 19, 2018
The Telegraph and The Times also reported Luke Pollard, an MP for Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport in south England, as tweeting: “Have had my first person get in touch to ask what’s happening with #KFC . . . and the answer is, I don’t know (yet).”
Pollard appears to have deleted the tweet in question.
KFC swapped deliverers from Bidvest Group to DHL last week, causing what the fried-chicken empire described as “teething problems” which have crippled its ability to operate.
DHL has one distribution depot in Rugby, central England, while Bidvest had several around the country, according to the trades union GMB, which represents slighted Bidvest employees.
The map below shows the distance lorries have to travel from DHL’s Rugby depot to KFC outposts as far away as northern Scotland and the southwestern tip of England.
KFC tweeted on Tuesday evening that “over half” of its stores around the country have reopened, and that “our teams are working flat out to open the rest.”
It also told BBC that, despite its efforts, some will remain shut for the rest of the week.
The company also has a designated web page where people can find their nearest open outlet.
“Equilibrium will soon be restored,” the company said.
On Wednesday, the BBC posted a video of at least seven lorries waiting outside DHL’s depot in Rugby.
Lorries and cabs continue to queue outside DHL/QSL distribution centre for KFC as a driver tells us ‘they haven’t got a clue what they’re doing’. pic.twitter.com/IKiC4XdJeF
— BBC CWR (@BBCCWR) February 21, 2018
DHL blamed the chicken shortage on “operational issues,” and said that it was working to “rectify the situation as a priority.”
London’s Metropolitan Police told Business Insider in a statement: “The Met’s call centres currently receive more than 14,500 calls every weekday.
“The Met is continuing its drive – including the use of its social media channels – to reduce improper use of the 999 and 101 numbers.”
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