We might not be seeing Family Mart’s Famichiki for a while.

Japanese convenience stores are filled with all kind of wonderful things, and one of the first you’ll notice when you step through the entrance is the fried food display case next to the register. And, without question, the star of that case is the fried chicken.

Even if we don’t pick up a piece on each and every shopping trip, the presence of fried chicken is like that of a good friend, giving us a warm hello, letting us know it’s there if we need it. Unfortunately, it looks like we’re going to have to do without one of our favorite varieties of convenience store fried chicken, Family Mart’s Famichiki, for a while.

This week, customers at certain Family Mart branches started seeing the notice shown in the above photos taped to the fried food case, explaining that the chain will be limiting or suspending Famichiki sales. Once again, the source of the sadness is the coronavirus, which is throwing a money wrench into the global fried chicken supply chain.

While coronavirus infection numbers have been on a steady downward trend for the last several months in Japan as vaccinations continue, Thailand is experiencing a resurgence in infections. Family Mart imports about two thirds of the chicken it uses for Famichiki from Thailand, but the country’s infection spike is leaving meat processing plants understaffed, and the slowdown means that Family Mart won’t be able to resupply its stores with meat for Famichiki in the same quantities it usually does, prompting the sales suspensions and limits.

With fried chicken being one of the most universally agreed-upon sources of joy, Japanese Twitter users have been predictably disappointed to hear about the situation, reacting with:

“I noticed my local Family Mart branch hadn’t been selling Famichiki for the last few days. So this is why.”
“I was going to Family Mart to buy something else, but when I heard about the fried chicken shortage, I decided to get that instead, since they still had some pieces in stock.”
“Gonna have to get my fix while I can.”
“Well, at least this is one shortage that isn’t happening because of scalpers.”

As mentioned by some commenters, Family Mart’s fried chicken supplies aren’t completely exhausted just yet. However, with fried chicken being Japan’s favorite food to eat at Christmastime and Christmas parties, Family Mart wants to make sure its stores won’t run out during the yuletide season. The chain says it’s aiming to resume regular-scale Famichiki sales in mid-December, at which time fried chicken fans hopefully can give themselves a Christmas gift of fried chicken.

Source: FNN Prime Online via Livedoor News via Jin, Twitter
Photo ©SoraNews24
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