HONG KONG/SHANGHAI Aug 4 McDonald's Corp
, which has over 2,000 restaurants in China, will restore
its full menu in some Chinese cities this week, a fortnight
after a food safety scandal forced the company to halt the sale
of staples such as Big Macs and Spicy McWings.
The world's biggest restaurant chain will resume full menus
in Beijing and Guangzhou this week, while menus in Shanghai will
return to normal this month, a company spokeswoman in China told
Reuters on Monday.
She said some other cities had also resumed full menus, but
declined to give more details.
McDonald's last month cut ties with Shanghai Husi Food, a
unit of U.S.-based OSI Group LLC, after a television report
triggered investigations into improper meat-handling procedures
at Shanghai Husi's factory. McDonald's decision led to meat
shortages at many of its restaurants in China.
The scandal highlights the challenges facing inspectors in
China's fast-growing and sprawling food industry. China is Yum
Brands Inc's biggest market and McDonald's third-largest
by outlets. The resumption process is taking longer than
expected, the McDonald's spokeswoman said.
"We will go back to the origin of the food, where the food
comes from, so it will take a longer time and is not as easy as
people may think. We are doing a very stringent inspection to
make sure the food meets the government's requirement and
McDonald's standards," she said.
In Hong Kong, McDonald's said it was now directly importing
lettuce and fresh onions from the United States and Taiwan, and
items on its menu such as Big Mac, Quarter Pounder with Cheese,
McChicken and Grilled Chicken Burger were restored on its menu
Shanghai Husi was accused earlier this month by a television
documentary of mixing expired meat with fresh produce and
forging production dates. Shanghai regulators said the company
had forged the dates on smoked beef patties and then sold them
after they expired.
Chinese police have taken six executives of Shanghai Husi
into custody, state media reported on Sunday.
The food safety scare is testing local consumers' loyalty to
foreign fast-food chains. Yum, owner of the KFC and Pizza Hut
chains, said last month that the scandal had caused "significant
negative" damage to sales at its restaurants.
(Reporting by Donny Kwok in HONG KONG and Brenda Goh in
SHANGHAI; Editing by Ryan Woo)