How the war in Ukraine could affect American fast food chains

Business Insider reported the closure of four McDonald’s restaurants in Moscow in 2014 — closures that were cited as health codes by widely seen as retaliation for Western sanctions over Ukrainian aggression. Shares of McDonald’s fell 0.36% on the same day. At the beginning of the same month, Russia had banned “…all imports of meat, fish, dairy products, fruits and vegetables from the United States, the European Union, Norway, Canada and Australia for one year”. Widespread shifts in food and beverage industry sales are likely to have ripple effects on U.S. consumers, as food vendors will be squeezed on both the supply and demand side.

Rabobank predicts, via TIME magazine, that a war with Ukraine could raise wheat prices by 30% and corn prices by 20%. Speaking about the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, Andrew Harig, vice president of the Food Marketing Institute at the US Department of Agriculture’s Annual Agricultural Outlook Forum, said: “It will drive up inflation. We just don’t have a full understanding of how this process unfolds.”

So, in short, expect those fast food burgers, tacos and fries to start getting more expensive – just how much remains to be seen.

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