About 1,000 Wendy’s restaurants across the country have stopped serving burgers and other beef dishes, the latest sign of an escalating threat of a national meat shortage caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The company confirmed it is experiencing problems with beef suppliers and that “some of our menu items may be temporarily limited at some restaurants in this current environment.”
The statement came after reports of customers being unable to purchase burgers at various locations of the fast-food chain.
Wendy’s issues are a sign of a broader slowdown in America’s meat production as thousands of workers in processing plants have contracted the novel coronavirus and facilities shutter due to fears of further spread of the virus.
Although President Trump attempted to resolve the situation in late April by signing an executive order to keep meat-processing plants in operation, the order is not expected to resolve the slowdown as it won’t protect workers from a highly contagious disease spreading in the crowded surroundings of a processing facility.
Some states are particularly affected, with restaurants in Ohio, Michigan and New York running extremely low on fresh meat, while other states such as Arizona and Nevada haven’t been hit as hard.