South Africa: Bone-in Chicken Shortage
Numerous fast-food restaurants in South Africa have announced supply shortages of bone-in chicken products, with KFC closing 70 restaurants. Although loadshedding, or rolling blackouts, have been blamed for the shortage, record-low imports in the later half of 2022 driven by high tariffs are certainly a significant factor. Loadshedding, which is expected to continue and intensify in the near term, is limiting the ability of domestic producers to meet specific requirements by the quick-service industry. The resulting closures are harmful to the fast-food sector and create challenges for consumers who are increasingly reliant upon fast food due to the challenges of food preparation during a blackout. Softening global poultry prices may drive an increase in imports and stabilize domestic supply, providing relief to the industry.