KFC in partial return to ex-distributor Bidvest
Fast-food chain KFC has returned to its old distributor after suffering chicken shortages that forced the temporary closure of hundreds of outlets.
Last month, the chain experienced widespread distribution problems after it decided to switch its logistics contract from Bidvest to DHL.
But now Bidvest has signed a new agreement with KFC UK & Ireland to supply up to 350 of its 900 restaurants.
Bidvest pledged "a seamless return".
Until 13 February, all KFC's chicken was delivered by Bidvest.
But after the contract switched to DHL, which uses software developed by the firm Quick Service Logistics (QSL), many of the food giant's outlets began running out of chicken products.
At the time, DHL blamed "operational issues" at a warehouse near Rugby it was using for deliveries nationwide.
"Our focus remains on ensuring our customers can enjoy our chicken without further disruption," said a KFC spokesperson.
"With that in mind, the decision has been taken in conjunction with QSL and DHL to revert the distribution contract for up to 350 of our restaurants in the north of the UK back to Bidvest Logistics.
"We've been working hard to resolve the present situation with QSL and DHL. This decision will ease pressure at DHL's Rugby depot, to help get our restaurants back to normal as quickly as possible."
KFC said more than 97% of its restaurants were now open for business, but there would be "some limited menus" before full service was resumed.
Paul Whyte of Bidvest said the firm was "delighted" to resume its partnership with KFC.
He added: "KFC are a valued customer and we will provide them with a seamless return to our network."