SINGAPORE: Police had to intervene at some McDonald’s restaurants in the United States after a one-day-only promotion for its popular Szechuan sauce left fans frustrated over the “super limited batch”.
Some customers even staged a protest - which worked, as the fast food chain has pledged to bring back the sauce in larger quantities.
The Szechuan sauce, first created in 1998 to promote the Disney film Mulan, became the talk of the town again after popular science-fiction cartoon Rick and Morty featured it in an episode earlier this year.
Following the episode, fans of the dipping sauce called went on social media to demand that McDonald's put Szechuan sauce back on their menu.
On Oct 1, McDonald’s tweeted that it would indeed bring the Szechuan sauce back for one day at certain outlets, much to the delight of Rick and Morty fans.
However, the promotional stunt quickly backfired on McDonald’s when restaurants ran out of the sauce and things became chaotic, with some customers holding up protest signs demanding for the sauce.
At one restaurant, an angry crowd could be heard chanting “We want sauce” as police were called in to manage the situation.
As buyers became obsessed with getting the sauce, the frenzy spread to the online sphere, with some of the limited edition packets listing for five-figure sums on eBay.
On Saturday, McDonald’s sought to appease the customers on Twitter, saying it was "sorry not everyone could get some super-limited Szechuan”. A day later, it went a step further, promising to bring the sauce back in winter – this time in greater quantities.
"Between the costumes, the memes and the cross-state travel, you, the fans, showed us what you got. And our super-limited batch, though well-intentioned, clearly wasn't nearly enough to meet that demand," McDonald's said in a tweet.
"Szechuan sauce is coming back once again this winter. And instead of being one-day-only and limited to select restaurants, we're bring more - a lot more - so that any fan who's willing to do whatever it takes for Szechuan sauce will only have to ask for it at a nearby McDonald's."