A Nandos branch in Wimbledon. Credit: Google Street View / Google Street View

Chicken deficit said to be down to customers' rush to use old loyalty cards before they expire. Picture: Google Street View

You may think it’s a clucking joke but a second Nando's chicken restaurant ran out of chicken this week.

Customers were left in a flap after the Wimbledon branch ran out of chicken, shortly after a Leicester restaurant reportedly had the same issue.

The shortage this time appeared to be down to a rush of diners who wanted to use their loyalty cards before they expired, according to the Evening Standard.

Customer Susan French, 30, had been watching tennis earlier this week tried to redeem her Nando's card before it expired at the end of June.

She told the Standard, “When I went in they told me they had run out of chicken. It was absolutely ridiculous. They’re a chicken restaurant that can’t serve chicken. I could not believe it. It was a complete joke.”

Earlier this week, customers complained that a Leicester branch was temporarily unable to serve some of its signature dishes, with one Twitter user lamenting, “I’m still coming to terms with what happen [sic.]. One colleague is inconsolable.”

The popular chain, famous for its peri-peri chicken, is swapping paper loyalty cards for a plastic credit card-style one which stores details online.

A spokesperson for Nando's said: “The launch of Online Takeaway has been incredibly popular, and with many customers also wanting to use their final remaining chillies on their old paper loyalty cards, unfortunately some restaurants ran out of certain options for a short period of time."

"We would like to apologise to everyone who couldn’t get their meal of choice, and assure our customers that our restaurants are fully stocked with Per-Peri chicken!”

Nando’s has around 300 restaurants and has seen its popularity surge with celebrity devotees, from Premier League footballers to Beyonce and David Cameron.