McDonald's to shut Donegal outlet and all others in Ireland and the UK

Company makes decision as coronavirus crisis worsens

McDonald’s Ireland contributed €2.3 million to local economy in Donegal

The McDonald's outlet in Letterkenny

McDonald’s is to close all of its restaurants in Ireland and the UK by 7.00 pm on Monday as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

It employs almost 6,000 people in the Republic and more than 3,000 in Northern Ireland.

The Letterkenny outlet, which celebrated 20 years in business last November, is the biggest employer of any restaurant in the county.

The premises was recently expanded following a major investment programme.

The jobs blow is the latest in a series of lay-offs in the town due to the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

The company posted the following message on its facebook page.

In recent days, the Letterkenny branch has seen extremely busy trade at its drive-thru facility.

The move will also be a massive blow for the Irish beef trade and in particular the burger trade. The food service trade has been under pressure across the EU with the spread of coronavirus closing down restaurants and fast food outlets in recent weeks. 

According to the Irish Farmers’ Journal,  McDonald’s is one of the largest exporters of Irish beef by volume, with the company spending €163m on Irish produce for export to McDonald’s restaurants across the UK and Europe. It purchases about 40,000 tonnes of Irish beef annually. 

One in every five burgers sold in its outlets across Europe is of Irish origin. 

The move will have the biggest effect on Dawn Meats, which has produced over one billion beef burgers for the fast food chain since a €300 million deal was signed between the two companies in 2012. 

Dawn Meat's production site in Waterford produces more than 400 million beef burgers a year for McDonald's outlets in Ireland, the UK and Continental Europe.


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