FTC probing broken McDonald’s ice cream machines

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McDonald’s has long been the butt of jokes about its ice cream machines which many customers say are always broken.

Social media users complain, comedians rib the company and a developer even made an app to track broken machines.

Now, the federal government is getting involved.

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According to the Wall Street Journal, the Federal Trade Commission reached out to several McDonald’s franchisees this summer to try to figure out what’s going on.

Many of those owners are right there with customers in terms of frustration when they can’t serve shakes, McFlurries, or soft serve.

They say the machines are too complex and require a four-hour-long cleaning cycle at night that often fails. The company that makes the machines says it’s important to make sure equipment that uses dairy products is sanitized properly.

It’s not exactly clear what the FTC is investigating, but it is reportedly asking for information on how McDonald’s reviews suppliers and equipment.

The agency also appears interested in a franchisee’s right to repair the machines on their own.

Many have done so because they say waiting for an official fix from corporate McDonald’s takes too long.

The problem is the company that makes the machines says unauthorized fixes void the warranty.