Many locations around the country are running out of tortillas used for burritos and quesadillas.

By Mike Pomranz
July 03, 2019

Taco Bell has mastered the art of stretching their menu by creating new items out of existing components. A “Double Decker Taco” is just a hard taco wrapped in a soft taco. A “Quesarito” is just a burrito with a quesadilla shell. And so on and so forth. But there a potential pitfall to that strategy: If one major ingredient runs out, a large chunk of the menu can collapse like a house of cards. And sadly, Taco Bell is apparently facing a major shortage of a real doozy: their ten-inch tortillas. Welcome to the “Tortillapocalypse.”

Though Taco Bell has been playing down the shortage in its official statements, the problem — to some extent at least — is nearly nationwide. The company told People, “While some Taco Bell restaurants are experiencing supplier shortages, we are working diligently to replenish the supply of our tortillas (used for products like quesadillas and burritos) in those restaurants and encourage fans to try any of our other delicious menu items like the Power Menu Bowl or Cheesy Gordita Crunch in the meantime.”

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But over on the social news site Reddit, a user called TacoBellBlake — who claims to be an employee and has a significant posting history — says that the issue stems from Taco Bell switching suppliers. “First couple weeks of July they’ll be at lowest supply at half the stock they normally have,” the user writes. “July 21 they’ll be better stocked with a goal of July 28 to be at normal safe stock.”

Quickly looking at the online menus in locations in three cities across the country, some stores in both New York and St. Louis had nearly the entire burrito and quesadilla menu grayed out and listed as “Item not available at your selected restaurant.” Meanwhile, the online menu at two locations in Los Angeles appeared normal. Overall, the tortilla shortage appears to be affecting all standard-size burritos and quesadillas. Other items like tacos and most of the specialties are still available everywhere.

But whatever the extent or cause of the problem may be, one thing is certain: If you’re planning to go to Taco Bell in the near future, be prepared to find that some tortilla-based items may not be available. Instead of “Live mas,” just think of it as “Live un poquito menos.”

Update 12:15 p.m. ET: Taco Bell furnished Food & Wine with the following statement — “While some Taco Bell restaurants are experiencing supplier shortages, we are working diligently to replenish the supply of our tortillas (used for products like quesadillas and burritos) in those restaurants and encourage fans to try any of our other delicious menu items like the Power Menu Bowl or Cheesy Gordita Crunch in the meantime. We apologize for any inconvenience this might cause and appreciate our customers’ patience.”

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