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Russians trying to sell McDonald's plastic cutlery, straws, sugar sachets after chain closed restaurants

Business Insider US
McDonald's is one of many Western companies stopping or pausing operations in Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
  • Russians are trying to sell McDonald's plastic cutlery, receipts, and sugar sachets online.
  • One person has listed a straw for around $44.50 on Russian classified-ads website Avito.
  • McDonald's has closed its Russian restaurants in response to the country's invasion of Ukraine.
  • For more stories visit Business Insider.

In the run-up to McDonald's closing its Russian restaurants after the country invaded Ukraine, hundreds of people queued up to get their hands on what could be their last Big Mac in a while.

But a lucrative market has emerged online for those who were able to nab a few last-minute meals from the fast-food giant. People in Russia have been trying to sell McDonald's burgers and fries on Russian classified-ads website Avito at heavily swollen prices.

But it's not just food that's up for grabs. Some Avito users have been trying to sell McDonald's plastic cutlery and sugar sachets, too.

One user in Magnitogorsk, southwest Russia has listed an unopened pack containing a plastic knife and fork for 5,000 rubles (around $44.50) as well as an unused straw for the same price.

Another user in Moscow has listed three McDonald's sugar sachets, weighing 0.14 ounces each, for 2,000 rubles ($17.90). McFlurry's and sauces are on sale, too, including one listing of what claims to be a 3.5-ounce tub of McDonald's burger sauce for 10,000 rubles ($90).

Packaging is on offer too, including a fries carton for 500 rubles (around $4.50) and disposable cups for 1,000 rubles ($9) each.

Some users are even selling receipts, including one with the order number 099 on sale for 9,900 rubles ($89) and one for a transaction that cost 666 rubles being sold for 6,666 rubles ($60).

Prices vary massively and it's unclear what they're based on or whether people are actually buying the items. McDonald's paper bags are available at a range of prices, from 1,000 rubles ($9) to 6,300 rubles ($56.60) to even 50,000 rubles ($450). One artist has drawn on a McDonald's paper bag and is selling it for 35,000 rubles ($308).

One user is selling a cheeseburger for 50,000 rubles ($440), while another is selling four for 1,500 rubles a piece. Meals are also being bundled together, though in some cases the packaging is sold separately to the food.

It's also unknown how many of the listings are actually serious. One joke listing for a 69,000 ruble ($603) McDonald's meal says it includes "tasteless" chicken nuggets, fries, and used napkins, with crumbs sold separately, before adding that the vendor actually ate the lot.

The frenzy to buy McDonald's food before its Russian restaurants closed last week isn't dissimilar to the scramble to grab Big Macs and fries when McDonald's first Russian site opened in 1990. People started lining up outside the restaurant in Moscow at 4a.m, and by the time it opened at 10 a.m. there was already a 500-yard line of customers waiting to get in.

McDonald's is one of many Western companies stopping or pausing operations in Russia over its invasion of Ukraine. CEO Chris Kempczinski said it's "impossible" to predict when it will reopen its Russian restaurants.

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