Despite a return to menus earlier this month, fans reported the limited-run Nacho Fries weren't available at some locations.
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Scarcity can be good for publicity, and fast food brands regularly use that to their advantage. Oftentimes releases are limited on purpose to help build excitement, like the McRib. Other times, shortages are driven by genuine demand, like when Popeyes couldn't source enough chicken for their sandwiches. But sometimes, a shortage is just a shortage — like what is going on with Taco Bell's Nacho Fries?

In 2018, Taco Bell made waves by finally offering something most fast food restaurants already have on the menu: French fries. The Tex-Mex chain's lightly-spiced Nacho Fries were well received by fans, proving to be one of the chain's most popular new items ever.

Since then, Nacho Fries have come and gone from Taco Bell's menu a few times — ostensibly in a McRib-like move to continue to build hype, because how hard is it really to source potatoes, right? But recently, some online chatter has led people to believe that, actually, Taco Bell is struggling to keep its Nacho Fries in stock during their latest return.

On the 30,000-subscriber-strong subreddit Living Mas, numerous people are reporting visiting locations that are out of Nacho Fries despite the menu item having just returned on March 10. "There are 5 locations within 15 minutes of me and 3 of them have been out of fries for at least a week," one Redditor commented in a post entitled "Nacho Fry shortage?" "Same at my local TB," another Redditor wrote, "they had them for a grand total of a week or less when they ran out."

Taco Bell's Nacho Fries
Credit: Craig Barritt / Getty Images for Taco Bell

So what's going on? A couple people on the thread purported to have the answer. "My local TB ran out of them. They said there was a warehouse shortage," one commenter explained. "They have them again now though." The user Stubby_Pablo, who is listed as a verified employee, agreed: "Supply chain shortage. They're talking about limiting # of nacho fries per order in my area."

"We were experiencing temporary shortages at select locations that have been quickly resolved which means there are still plenty of Nacho Fries to go around," a Taco Bell representative told Food & Wine via email. "Currently, Taco Bell is partnering with Grubhub to offer free fries (with a minimum $15 purchase) that runs until April 13."

So there you have it: Even if fries were running low in you area before, those hiccups will likely be all cleared up by the time you hit the drive-thru.