It’s been a bad year for the Colonel. People under 25 don’t know who he is; the KFC franchisees are in a lawsuit with their corporate overseers, Popeyes beat KFC in a taste test and the company is paying college girls to advertise the Double Down on their butts. To make matters worse, KFC announced yesterday that U.S. sales continue to sink.
Unlike its sibling fast food properties Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, which announced quarterly sales increases of 8% and 3% respectively, KFC sales were down 7% in the U.S. last quarter.
“The system is hurting,” one franchisee, who was formerly the company’s COO and currently owns 12 KFCs, told the AP about the situation. “We’ve got to do something to reinvigorate the system.”
Says Yum! Brands CEO:
There is no quick fix… We are absolutely committed to turning KFC around. And we’re seeing slow but steady progress.
Many franchisees continue to blame the company’s recent fixation on grilled chicken and sandwiches for consumers’ waning interest in its menu.
“It’s still Kentucky Fried Chicken,” said the aforementioned franchisee, referencing the restaurant chain’s old name. “Our DNA is fried chicken. That’s what we’re known for. And after the launch, there could have been a little bit better balance between grilled and fried. We were just all one-sided.”
While we’re on the topic of KFC, our readers in Canada who have felt bereft of the salty saltiness that is the Double Down will soon be able to try one for themselves. The bacon-and-cheese sandwich on fried chicken bread is set to make its Canadian debut on Oct. 18.
KFC’s Double Down coming to Canada [LFPress.com]