Chips are down

Kenya: KFC spud shortage sparks hot-potato over sourcing

By Morris Kiruga

Premium badge Reserved for subscribers

Posted on January 6, 2022 07:31

Fast food chain KFC has announced plans to localise its potato supply chain in Kenya, after it ran out of imported potatoes as a result of global supply chain disruptions.

On a 3 January Twitter post, the chain announced that it had run out of potato chips after the busy December holiday season. It instead offered its customers alternatives, such as extra chicken, buns, coleslaw, and ugali – a Kenyan staple.

The news had unintended consequences. It triggered a backlash from Kenyans on Twitter and other social-media sites, who questioned the franchise’s sourcing of potatoes from Egypt over locally grown ones. For much of Monday 3 January, the hashtag #BoycottKFC was trending on Twitter.

The news even attracted the attention of a county governor…

…and KFC’s competitors in Kenya also jumped on the bandwagon.

Sending spuds

KFC, as well as several other major fast food chains in Kenya and the region, import their potatoes from Egypt and

There's more to this story

Get unlimited access to our exclusive journalism and features today. Our award-winning team of correspondents and editors report from over 54 African countries, from Cape Town to Cairo, from Abidjan to Abuja to Addis Ababa. Africa. Unlocked.

Subscribe Now

cancel anytime