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​KFC Temporarily Closes Lesotho Outlets Amid South African Bird Flu Crisis

​KFC Temporarily Closes Lesotho Outlets Amid South African Bird Flu Crisis

Posted by Emily on 27th Oct 2023

KFC has declared the closure of all its outlets in Lesotho following a severe bird flu outbreak in the adjacent nation of South Africa.

A track Gafirita jean d'amour Uwimana, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In response to the crisis, the government of Lesotho has prohibited any import of poultry from South Africa, a move that KFC indicates has "severely impacted" its chicken supply. KFC assures its chickens are sourced from South African farms with certifications declaring them bird flu-free.

Lesotho, known for its mountainous terrain, is a country encompassed by South Africa. For several months, South Africa has been grappling with the containment of bird flu, leading to the culling of over seven million egg-laying hens, accounting for 20-30% of the nation's total stock.

In recent developments, neighbouring Mozambique culled approximately 45,000 infected hens that it had imported from South Africa just last week. Similarly, Namibia imposed a ban on the import of South African poultry this past September.

This outbreak has precipitated a shortage of both eggs and chicken meat in numerous countries throughout southern Africa. Despite these challenges, KFC Lesotho expressed its dedication to identifying a solution, reassuring patrons that its doors will soon be open once again.