Shop owner Chris Dimopoulos concerns over McDonald’s new potato scallop

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Greek Australian, Chris Dimopoulos, owner of the Blue Sea Fish Shop in Castlemaine, Victoria, shared his frustrations about McDonald’s new potato scallop in a TikTok video posted on Friday.

The TikTok video where Mr Dimopoulos shares his concerns over the potato shortage in Australia and McDonald’s new potato item, has since gone viral with over one million views.

McDonald’s Australia introduced the potato product as part of their Summer special menu for a limited time.

According to the peak industry body for Australian vegetable and potato industries, the potatoes used to make hot chips, scallops and other potato products are in low supply at the moment due to weather conditions and a surge in demand for chips, Kitchen Nine reported.

Mr Dimopoulos said in the TikTok video, “I think it’s a marketing ploy. For me, it’s about where are these potatoes coming from?”

“If you’ve got 990 odd Macca’s stores in Australia and you serve about 1.7 million, according to your own website, 1.7 million customers a day, if you sell one potato cake to every 10 customers, that’s 170,000 potato cakes you’re selling every single day,” Mr Dimopoulos said.

@blueseafishshop Macdonalds is stealing our potatoes… #potatocake #potatoscallop #bullshit #nochips #spuds #tookourspuds @Mcdonald’s Australia ♬ original sound – Blue Sea Fish Shop

AUSVEG’s National Manager of Communications Shaun Lindhe said in a statement to Kitchen Nine regarding the potato shortage, “While it is unclear how long this tightened supply may last, these issues occur from time to time and are usually only experienced in the short-term once supply levels resume to more normal levels.”

The fish and chip store owner took to the Today show on the weekend to further share his frustrations of being a small business owner in Australia during a potato shortage. Mr Dimopoulos told the hosts that he and other small business owners have been given a specific allocation of potatoes.

“My suppliers have told me that I’m on an allocation. I can’t get more than what I get, so they’ve average my my use out over the last 12 months and said, ‘Well, that’s what you usually use. You can’t get any more than that’. I’m good to that point, but if I start selling more, if I get busier, I had a really good day, I won’t be able to top off the next week,” Mr Dimopoulos said.

A spokesperson for McDonald’s Australia said in a statement the potatoes for the scallops were sourced before the current shortage, according to Kitchen Nine. “McDonald’s Australia has been proudly supporting Aussie farmers for more than 50 years. Wherever possible we prefer to source local, including Aussie potatoes for our famous fries and hash browns,” the spokesperson said.

Mr Dimopoulos pointed out in his TikTok video, “It’s the same potato we use for our chips. If McDonald’s are going to sell 170,000 potato cakes a day across all their shops, that’s no potatoes left for every mum and dad shop left in Australia.”

“It’s a really tough time at the moment. It’s been a really hard time for us to get the supply we need to run our businesses,” Mr Dimopoulos added.

Mr Dimopoulos encouraged his consumers to support local businesses. “Every fish shop I know around here is struggling to get chips, potatoes, potato cakes, we’ve just gone through dim sims, cabbage, every other shortage, lettuce shortage. Now we’ve run into a chip shortage and Macca’s is bringing out a potato cake, and their stealing all the bloody potato cakes, stealing all the potatoes.”

“We need to make sure we’re supporting our locals. You know, even down to your local pub and stuff. If they don’t have chips, we need to be a little bit understanding.”

Source: Kitchen Nine

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