Quantcast
Connect with us

US sanctions encourage McDonald’s to cook up Russian fries

Published

on

French fries at McDonald’s restaurants from Moscow to Murmansk will be Russian from now on, as U.S. sanctions have spurred on a shift by the American fast-food chain to use local potatoes.

McDonald’s Corp (MCD.N), which opened in Russia in 1990 as the Soviet Union collapsed, has turned to Russian ingredients for everything from Big Macs to chicken burgers.

But till now it relied on frozen French fries from the Netherlands and Poland as Russian spuds weren’t quite right.

 “There was no potato which would suit us in terms of quality – color, taste, size – these are all the details that are important for us,” Khamzat Khasbulatov, chairman of McDonald’s Russia, told Reuters.
 
But swings in the oil price and sanctions by the United States and other Western nations – imposed over Moscow’s annexation of Crimea and other rows – have hit the rouble and led to trade restrictions, causing a headache for any business in Russia that imports or exports goods.
“The rouble’s volatility was one of the major components of our interest in localization,” Khasbulatov said.

Now a new plant near Lipetsk, a city 450 km (280 miles) south of Moscow, using potatoes grown on local farms will supply frozen fries to the chain of 651 outlets across Russia under a long-term contract, raising the share of the chain’s locally sourced products to 98 percent.

ADVERTISEMENT

“This gives us the possibility to continue our development in a more stable way,” the chairman said. “It minimizes the risks connected to customs and administrative decisions, and guarantees stable, predictable prices in roubles.”

The plant, worth 8.7 billion roubles, was built jointly by Russian agricultural group Belaya Dacha and the Netherlands-based Lamb Weston Meijer, both long-time partners of McDonald’s.

The factory has capacity to process 200,000 tonnes of potatoes a year, washing, cutting and freezing the vegetables.

ADVERTISEMENT

The rouble has recovered some ground as the price of oil, a major revenue earner for Russia, has risen from a low in 2016. But Western trade restrictions remain in place.

Russia’s response to punitive measures has included a 2014 ban on a range of Western food imports.

“Sanctions as well as counter sanctions not only affect our company but the whole industry and the economy,” said Khasbulatov, whose firm has 50,000 Russian employees and more than 160 domestic suppliers.

ADVERTISEMENT

 
“But in any case we continue our development, continue to build new restaurants and modernize existing ones,” he said, adding that firm opened 41 restaurants in Russia in 2017.

Editing by Edmund Blair


Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Facebook

Disney heiress who went undercover to Disneyland ‘livid’ at conditions and pay

Published

on

Heiress Abigail Disney went to one of her family's resorts to see conditions for workers herself and was disgusted by what she saw.

In comments to Yahoo News podcast "Through Her Eyes," Disney described how she went to Disneyland in California undercover and found that workers at the resort were treated poorly—and underpaid.

"Every single one of these people I talked to were saying, 'I don't know how I can maintain this face of joy and warmth when I have to go home and forage for food in other people's garbage,'" said Disney.

Continue Reading

Facebook

Ex-Peru president wanted for corruption arrested in the US

Published

on

Former Peruvian president Alejandro Toledo was arrested in the United States Tuesday to face extradition to his home country on corruption charges, authorities in the South American nation said.

The 73-year-old is suspected of involvement in the sprawling Odebrecht scandal in which the construction giant paid hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes throughout the continent to secure huge public works contracts.

The Peruvian attorney general's office announced on Twitter that Toledo "was arrested this morning for extradition, in the United States."

Toledo has been formally charged with receiving a $20 million payment from Odebrecht to grant it the tender to build the Interoceanic Highway that links Peru with Brazil.

Continue Reading
 

Facebook

Comic-Con mines past for future hits on 50th edition

Published

on

A smorgasbord of sequels, prequels and reunions from "Terminator" to "Game of Thrones" awaits thousands of misty-eyed comic book geeks and sci-fi nerds descending on San Diego this week for the world's largest celebration of pop culture fandom.

The 50th edition of Comic-Con International will see 135,000 cosplayers, bloggers, movie executives and humble fans pile into a sweaty convention center for glimpses of their heroes, in town to promote the next mega-hit films, TV shows and comic books.

This anniversary edition promises to be more nostalgia-laden than most -- among those expected to appear are Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton, who will soon reunite on screen for the first time since 1991's "Terminator 2" for Paramount's killer cyborg sequel "Dark Fate."

Continue Reading
 
 
 

Copyright © 2019 Raw Story Media, Inc. PO Box 21050, Washington, D.C. 20009 | Masthead | Privacy Policy | For corrections or concerns, please email [email protected]

close-image