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Restaurant Brands International’s Burger King Enters Chicken Sandwich Wars

The “Ch’King” sandwich – a hand-breaded chicken fillet served on a toasted potato bun, topped with pickles and signature sauce – will hit menus nationwide on June 3.

Image source: Burger King

Restaurant Brand’s International’s (NYSE: QSR) Burger King announced plans to launch its new chicken sandwich in June, making it the latest fast-food chain to enter a market that is more crowded than ever. 

On Wednesday, the Miami-based company revealed that its “Ch’King” sandwich – a hand-breaded chicken fillet served on a toasted potato bun, topped with pickles and signature sauce – will hit menus nationwide on June 3.

The new item, which will cost $3.99 to $4.99 depending on location, also comes in a spicy version or a deluxe combination that includes lettuce and tomato.

Following the success of a fried chicken sandwich rolled out in 2019 by Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, also owned by Burger King’s parent company, chains have been scrambling to add their own versions to menus in a bid to compete in the so-called “chicken sandwich wars.”

Burger King will soon be up against brands including Chick-fil-A, McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Shake Shack. Yum! Brands' KFC recently expanded its newest chicken sandwiches to restaurants nationwide. 

Taco Bell, another chain owned by Yum! Brands, announced in March it will be rolling out its own version of a chicken sandwich later this year. 

After announcing in February it would soon be replacing its current crispy chicken sandwich with a new hand-breaded version, Burger King started testing the item across its US locations. According to CNN, the chain took about two years perfecting the recipe, training employees and setting up new kitchen equipment before bringing it to market.

Burger King North America’s chief marketing officer Ellie Doty told CNBC, “We really took our time to get it right, to get the reps in at the restaurant and make sure that every restaurant had [its] hand-breading station set up properly.”

The Ch’King name, Doty said, was inspired by a customer who tried the sandwich during the trial phase and suggested that the chain should rename itself Chicken King.

The new menu item’s launch comes as the US faces a chicken shortage, fueled in part by the demand for chicken sandwiches and lack of poultry processing workers, CNBC noted. Doty told the outlet that Burger King took steps to ensure it has a “very robust supply chain” to make sure restaurants could handle pressure.

To promote the new sandwich and drive sales, Burger King is offering a free Whopper to customers who order the Ch’King on the chain’s app or online. The deal runs through June 20.


Source: Equities News

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