A MCDONALD'S PR stunt has backfired and sparked chaos at restaurants around the US, after the fast food chain brought back a rare Szechuan sauce not seen in store since 1998.
On Saturday, thousands of Rick and Morty cartoon fans were promised the special dipping sauce at McDonald's restaurants across America.
Police were called to at least one restaurant after hundreds of people queued outside restaurants demanding the sauce.
One video posted to Twitter showed customers chanting "we want sauce" while being held back by police.
In 1998, McDonald's did a promotional campaign for Disney's Mulan that included a new Szechuan sauce for Chicken McNuggets.
It became well known after featuring in the popular cartoon Rick and Morty, which is what prompted the fast food chain to bring it back over the weekend.
Fans then launched a social media campaign, urging the fast-food chain to bring back the limited-edition sauce.
Cops are at Wellington McDonalds where tons of angry people lined up for hrs for Rick and Morty Szechuan sauce only to learn they had none pic.twitter.com/3T272osid4— Lulu Ramadan (@luluramadan) October 7, 2017
But according to disgruntled fans, some stores didn't even receive the sauce - or only had a handful of sachets in stock.
McDonald's apologised to fans on social media but repeated their warning that the release was going to be "super limited".
Earlier this year, MAC cosmetics in Australia left thousands of customers up in arms after they failed to meet demand during a "free red lipstick" promotion.
In July, MAC makeup outlets, David Jones and selected Myer stores across the country offered customers a free full-sized lipstick to celebrate National Lipstick Day.
Promoting the giveaway on Instagram only, thousands of fans shared, tagged and geared up for a free lip shade because - unlike most giveaways - this promotion had no catch.
But instead, thousands of customers were left empty-handed after the "disgraceful" giveaway ran out of stock within minutes of some doors opening.
- with the New Zealand Herald.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.