Canada Markets closed

Smaller rivals look to cash in on KFC chicken supply woes

A closed sign hangs on the door of a KFC restaurant as supply problems continue to hit the nationwide chain (REUTERS/Darren Staples)

Over half of KFC’s restaurants are now back open serving chicken – but hundreds more look likely to stay shut for days to come.

The ongoing supply issues is estimated to be costing the chain up to £1m a day – and it’s understood top executives from the US have not flown in to find out just what is going on.

KFC tweeted last night that it had got supplies through to half of its 900 UK & Ireland restaurants but a spokesman today could not say how long before the remainder were open.

A KFC spokesman said: “We anticipate the number of closures will reduce today and over the coming days as our teams work flat out all hours to clear the backlog.

“Each day more deliveries are being made.”

Smaller local rivals are cashing in on the supply problems which first began to bite at the weekend.

London-based Sam’s Chicken said it was “giving away” £10 meals adding: “Looking for chicken? We have BUCKETS of it.

“There is no shortage of chicken at Sam’s. All of our shops are fully stocked and open for business as usual.”

MORE: Gig economy shake-up will see a new definition of ‘worker’

Meanwhile, Bristol chain Miss Millies is offering a buy-one-get-one-free deal for the weekend. It said on Twitter: “If you have been affected by the recent chicken drought and it wasn’t your fault, please visit your nearest Miss Millie’s store to satisfy your cravings.”

KFC has signed a new deal with DHL but the delivery firm has struggled with the logistical operation.

Restaurants and drive-throughs began running low on Friday and Saturday and by Sunday many had been forced to shut their doors.

MORE: KFC closes hundreds of restaurants after running out of chicken

The supply issues could also be good news for larger rivals such as Burger King and McDonald’s, although neither was commenting today.

Unions say they warned KFC of the possible impact of switching suppliers to no avail.

A list of the KFC restaurants that are open for business can be found here.