Back to Squawk list
  • 57

Three Planes Full of Potatoes are Flying to Japan to Help Deal With its French Fry Shortage

San Francisco-based forwarders Flexport has been contracted to fly "three 747 loads of potatoes" to Japan to ease a spud shortage caused by flood-related delays at Vancouver Port and ongoing supply chain bottlenecks. A recent move by McDonald’s to limit french-fry portions in Japan has fed speculation that the tater consignee is, in fact, McDonald's. ( More...

Sort type: [Top] [Newest]

bentwing60 13
Idaho is Happy!
Mike Walsh 12
Idaho is always happy.
Grd Newell 2
Could be from anywhere, even GASP! a non-US supplier....
William Lucas 2
Yes, if they were being shipped by McCain's! Their "New Zealand" frozen chips are actually grown in China!
jack slide 12
BREAKING NEWS: Mr Potato Head behind shortage!
jack slide 2
He says “ this is just to start since my manhood has been stripped away after being made gender neutral, just wait till August 19”.
I can not wait to see his choice for professional (female) sports to break records in.
btweston 1
David Schneider 6
What. No ketchup?
BigBook 10
KC10s w/ ketchup depart from KCLE/Cleveland near Heinz main plant and join the formation in Anchorage. Japan, sitting in the sea like a line of soup dumplings, won't need help with salt.
nunzio nunzio 1
nope we have a tomato shortage!
BigBook 1
Condiment cargo is coming from Heinz strategic reserve deep below Browns' stadium after a plea by the new Japanese PM, who won't eat fries without it.
James Patterson 6
Air Idaho! Spud Force One!
David Ingram 5
747s are wonderful. They could deliver fill dirt if they wanted to. They were still finding coal dust from the Airlift in the c-47s and c-54s when they retired them. I wonder what a 747 loaded with onions would smell like for the next 5 years?
James Simms 3
Smells like money in the bank
Torsten Hoff 4
Pretty crazy that those economics make sense. Walmart sells a 10 pound bag of Russet potatoes for $4.77, but that is of course the retail price. So the cargo isn't worth much (peanuts? potatoes?) but heavy.
greg mu 8
Turn them into fries & see what they sell for per pound!
linbb 3
Cattle get shipped on the hoof at leaset they did that a few years back.
jbermo 2
. . . usually, pregnant cows are shipped - of which would be two cows per package.
William Lucas 1
They still do by the shipload to the Arabs and Asians. But NO pregnant cows as those below claim, all bulls and steers
Tim Dyck 1
Live horses are also shipped to Japan. I have a freind who raises horses and delivers them to the Calgary airport for a direct flight to Japan.
jbermo -1
. . . usually, pregnant cows are shipped - of which would be two cows per package.
AWAAlum 2
Some things are worth repeating, then, some others ....
William Lucas 0
Are just ignorant!
mbrews 2
Juan Browne (aka blancolirio channel ) spoke of a 777 cargo flight he crewed.

Hauling Southern Cal produce LAX-LHR Feb. 2021. Then returning LHR-LAX bringing a cargo of Scottish farm-raised salmon.

Don't know the fishy economics. Some Socal readers might prefer fresher salmon, maybe from Puget Sound.
AWAAlum 4
Breaking News: Japan sets record as world's Second Potato Famine.
Ken Lane 12
The least Japan can do is send a dozen widebodies full of people to Washington DC to help with the shortage of integrity.
Richard Griego 3
As long as they don't run out of fries here in the good old U.S.
Harry Venison 4
I love how the Facebook news anchors come out of their holes to post on an aviation site. Pathetic.
Good on the farmers, I hope they made some good profit !
TERRY Smith 2
How many whale carcasses can you fit on a 747?
Timothy Johnson 2
Potatoes are in tight supply in the U.S. following three seasons with below average harvests.
I dont know about now but a year ago idaho farmers were giving away what they could and throwing the rest in giant pits.
Tim Dyck 1
Meanwile your President slapped tarrifs on Canadian Potatoes being sold into the USA.
John Stewart 2
Japanese fast food worker fired on the spot for asking customer, "You want fries with that?"
Edward Bardes 2
One of my old jobs at a fast food restaurant made it a fireable offence to *not* ask that to customers.
Roy Talbot 3
Let them eat cake
nunzio nunzio 3
And meanwhile in the USA the biggest thing being shipped is Illegal aliens, go figure.
Greg S 3
Breaking news!

McDonalds ships food from the US to their international locations.
sharon bias 2
Still can't understand why we have a computer chip problem in the supply chain. How many chips would fit on three 747's? I imagine a couple of plane loads would get all the new cars waiting for chips completed and off to the dealerships.
Andy Cruickshank 4
English chips or American chips. American ones would have a closer appearance. Happy New Year!
mbrews 3
I'll take fish and chips. Happy New Year.
Shenghao Han 1
Its not that, its the chip factory (Not potato chips), can't make more. Almost everyone is using TSMC 7nm chips, let be AMD, Apple, Car computer etc.
There isn't simply enough wafer (silicon wafer) to go around.
sharon bias 4
You are correct. Some news stories have indicated the chips are made, but can't get out of China. If they aren't made, then transportation to the US is the least of the problems.
WhiteKnight77 6
OR is it that the Chinese are holding up the chip shipments for other reasons. This is a really good example of not allowing for off-shore manufacturing. And, millions of chips could fit in 3 747s.
William Lucas 2
Yes, they are waiting for an apology from those westerners who claim Covid is a Chinese invention! Well they won't be getting one from me! Just goes to prove money hungry Americans get anything made in China where they can make the most profit, then cry when the Chinese default on their work!
DonDengler 1
Golleeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Shazam.
Tim Lamborn 1
Whew! I can now rest well knowing that’s been taken care of! 🙄
bbabis 1
What are they coming back with?
Larry Toler 2
Sushi and puffer fish perhaps?
DonDengler 0
Better not be the Japan virus ! God forbid
srobak 1
this doesn't make a lot of sense, as the primary side at mcdonalds in japan is rice, and not fries. Just like in the philippines.
Pete Ostrowski 1
Operation Potato Drop
Jaime Terrassa 1
now we know why MacDonalds has no French Frys
Lawrence Green 1
Chippie de do dah !
Neil Ward 1
Sounds very apeeling
Mario Bertoletti 1
At the time posted at Tehran (THR) I remember that in the immediate aftermath of the Islamic revolution every week Martinair Holland would operate a cargo flight carrying over 30 tons of eggs. Two hours after the landing the eggs were on sale in the streets and sold out in a few hours.
runway18escanaba 1
How many potatoes do you think it would take to fill a 747? Not in a container either, just load them up floor to ceiling with no room for moving.
Larry Toler 2
I was thinking the same thing. I worked for Golden Flake and the potatoes they would bring in for chips would be in a refrigerated 53'trailer loaded top to bottom with raw potatoes. The way the trailers were unloaded, they would be put on a lift and tilted backward at a steep angle and gravity fed into bins. I'd like to see that done with a 747.
mbrews 1
The limits probably going to be weight, not volume. Given the potato has a high percentage water (as does the human body).

So, water is about 8 pounds per gallon, 1 kilogram per liter. I did not look up cargo weight ratings for B 747. The loadmasters will calculate it.
Brent Bahler 1
There are 30,288 cubic feet of cargo space in a B747-8F, which is one of the largest cargo planes flying today. I will let others (perhaps some math nerds from Idaho) calculate how many potatoes you can cram into a cubic foot, and then everyone else can do the simple math from there.
Atanu Dey 1
Now they know how many potatoes it takes to fill the Albert Hall, I mean, the 747.
Peter Ashby 1
"I'd like to turn you on".
ian mcdonell 1
Is it April 1st already?
linbb 1
Will be interstin to see this happen wonder how many tons will fit in in one. Also wonder if they are straight out of CA storage or not.
Torsten Hoff 2
If the potatoes are really for McDonalds french fries, I would think that they are sending frozen, cut and processed fries and not raw potatoes. A considerable portion of the potatoes is not turned into usable fries or lost during processing, so why fly the waste (like the skins and end pieces, used for animal feed)?
Shenghao Han 1
But 747's don't come with refrigerators, at least not full plane load.
TERRY Smith 7
Just wind the windows down and the sub-zero atmosphere will keep them chilled.
loubearr 0
Did anyone get permission from McDonald's to take all those potatoes out of Idaho?
Mike Williams 0
Novel story but the only french fries I eat is from In N Out. Some sweet potato fries are good too.
Dan Chiasson -7
Quite honestly, who gives a rat's ()*() considering the current state of affairs? If this is considered as new's worthy, we are in a sorry state. Cheap reporting. Again.
SorenTwin 5
The point: it's an odd aircraft load to remedy an odd situation - which can make it interesting to readers. Just because it doesn't fit with your definition of newsworthy?
Dan Chiasson -2
Worthy of the first/headline story? Really? Page 12 news at best.
AWAAlum 4
Lighten up, big guy.
RECOR10 -5
What state is that? We have massive failures in the distribution chain (today I went to buy 4 cinder blocks...none for months I guess). The sending potatoes is a story oddly, because it is a story. Who would have thought this just months ago (two weeks to 'flatten the curve"). We can directly blame Biden, Fauci and their minions and subservient lemming followers.
AWAAlum 6
I guess I mis-read some postings over the past few months, but I'm under the impression folks here aren't really too hot about bringing politics here. Just sayin'.
Preston Daniel -1
Idaho is happy and happy living!
Preston Daniel 0
This is not a invite......Idaho is full!
Denis Briffaud -8
French fries or freedom fries ?
Anyways, this does not sound good for the future of the planet, it would be interesting to calculate the impact on CO2 levels...
I know, right! Dont they have enough rice? Wait, is this shipment for the folks in Iwakuni? Oooooh RAAAAAH!

As long as they paid for the shipping, I could care less if they overnight DC-10's full of ping-pong balls (you know, "they" love ping-pong).


Don't have an account? Register now (free) for customized features, flight alerts, and more!
This website uses cookies. By using and further navigating this website, you accept this.
Did you know that FlightAware flight tracking is supported by advertising?
You can help us keep FlightAware free by allowing ads from We work hard to keep our advertising relevant and unobtrusive to create a great experience. It's quick and easy to whitelist ads on FlightAware or please consider our premium accounts.