Taiwan is not the only territory affected by a shortage of French fries. In April, McDonald’s Philippines took to social media to announce to customers, “The supply of our world famous fries is limited due to the global freight crisis. That’s why you haven’t seen our fries in large boxes of red fries (medium, large and BFF) in stores” (via Inquirer.net). There is no indication that large sizes have made a comeback. Japan, Malaysia and Indonesia have had the same supply chain issues with their McDonald’s fries in January this year, with Malaysia calling their problem a “big sacri-fries”, according to Insider.
McDonald’s restaurants across Asia rely heavily on potato imports from the United States and Canada, which is why the delivery disruptions and bad weather that destroyed mustard factories in Canada early of the year had such a dramatic impact on the menu items found on the other side of the world. That aside, The Washington Post says potato shortages have occasionally occurred due to issues such as the onslaught of potato blight – a life-threatening disease that can cause apple plants to rot. land, according to RHS — or labor issues, which crippled supply lines in 2014 (via The Guardian).