Nearly 500 of the fast food chain's roughly 900 locations in Britain are closed.

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February 20, 2018 10:18 AM

Hundreds of KFC restaurants in the United Kingdom have temporarily closed after running out of a key menu item: chicken.

Nearly 500 of the fast food chain’s roughly 900 locations in Britain remained shut on Tuesday due to “teething problems” with the company’s new delivery partner, according to KFC’s website.

“The chicken crossed the road, just not to our restaurants,” KFC said in a statement first posted on Saturday, when 80% of their stores were closed. “We won’t compromise on quality, so no deliveries has meant some of our restaurants are closed, and others are operating a limited menu, or shortened hour.”

“We know that this might have inconvenienced some of you over the last few days, and disappointed you when you wanted your fried chicken fix — we’re really sorry about that,” KFC added. “Shout out to our restaurant teams who are working flat out to get us back up and running again.”

KFC, which is owned by Taco Bell and Pizza Hut parent Yum!, moved its food delivery service from Bidvest Group to DHL officially last Wednesday, Business Insider reports. GMB — a trade union whose members worked for the Bidvest Group — told the outlet that DHL is “not geared up” to deliver chicken around the country with only one distribution depot operating out of Rugby, a town in central England.

DHL acknowledged the snafu to CNN Money, telling them that a number of its deliveries had been “incomplete or delayed” because of “operational issues.” They added that they were working with KFC to solve the problem.

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KFC’s partnership with DHL was first announced in October as part of an ambition to “revolutionize” the food service distribution market in the Britain. The company said they would be managing KFC’s warehouse and distribution service, with a “greater focus on innovation, quality and service performance” and a promise to “provide a faster turnaround of orders.”

KFC has not said how long it will take for service to be restored to normal, saying on social media that “the Colonel is working on it.”

They told CNN Money they would pay its staff as normal and would encourage its franchises — which operate about 95% of KFC’s outlets in the U.K. — to do the same.

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