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US: Will Taco Bell’s new Nacho Fries affect the french fry supply?

Image result for nacho friesWhen ordering tacos from a food service outlet, the last thing you might expect would be this phrase: “Would you like fries with that?” Yet, on Jan. 25, across the nation, diners at Taco Bell will be presented with that question when the chain launches Nacho Fries. However, at the Food Institute, another question is asked: how will this affect the prices of french fries for the industry? Some quick math: if each of Taco Bell’s approximately 6,600 units sells just 100-lbs. of Nacho Fries each day, the company’s total annual usage would be about 240 million-lbs. This number represents roughly 1.5% of the 15.7 billion-lbs. of frozen french fries produced annually. For reference, McDonald’s units sell an average of 250-lbs. of french fries per unit every day, reported Bloomberg (April 19, 2012). Certainly, a lot remains to be seen regarding french fry pricing in the U.S. in the wake of Taco Bell’s new product. More