McDonald’s Korea to hike prices again amid soaring costs

August 19, 2022

McDonald’s Korea said Friday it will raise prices of its main products for the second time in about six months in a move seen as intended to transfer soaring raw material and logistical costs over to customers.

The Korean unit of the global fast food giant McDonald’s said it will raise the prices of 68 items, including drinks and desserts, by an average of 4.8 percent.

Of them, its flagship product, the Big Mac burger, will be sold for 4,900 won (US$3.70) beginning Thursday next week, up 6.5 percent from its current price of 4,600 won.

The move came just six months after it announced price hikes for around 30 items in February.

“We decided to adjust the price of our menu items to respond to surging operating expenses from a hike in raw material prices and logistics fees,” a company spokesperson said.

Its price hike marked the latest in a series of similar moves by fast food companies struggling in the face of surging raw material prices and logistical expenses.

International prices of key commodity prices have been on the rise as demand bounced back from a slump caused by the pandemic and supply chains remained snarled by the shipping process.

Rising prices of raw materials have driven up costs for many fast food chains, apparently prompting them to transfer the increased costs to customers in order to stay competitive.

In late July, Burger King said it would raise the prices of 46 items by an average of 4.5 percent, a decision that came just a few months after it raised its prices by an average of 2.9 percent in January.

The fried chicken and burger franchise KFC has increased the prices of some of its goods twice so far this year — first by 100-200 won in January and the second in July by around 200 won to 400 won.

Price increases continued at homegrown fast food chains as well.

Lotteria, a burger chain operated by Lotte Group, a major South Korean conglomerate, raised the price of 81 menu items by 5.5 percent on average in June, on top of a 4.1 percent increase last December.

Similarly, Mom’s Touch, another homegrown fast food chain known for its fried chicken burgers, also marked up its food prices twice in just six months.

McDonald's logo is shown in this undated photo. (Yonhap)

McDonald’s logo is shown in this undated photo. (Yonhap)