My Beef with Kentucky Fried Chicken

I used to love KFC when I was a kid, When it was the last Friday of the month I would get excited ’cause I knew that my mother would be coming home with KFC’s family feast. When I went shopping with my mother I would beg her to get both of us some KFC and most of the time she did. My love for KFC stopped when I was 17, that was a point when I realized KFC’s advertising campaign is f**ked the f**k up. A friend and I were watching cricket together and a KFC ad came on, this was way back in ’04, they were advertising street wise two. The ad featured contractors all cramped at the back of a bakkie, the driver of the bakkie ordered a “street wise two” (pictured above) at a drive-through and as he was driving off the black contractors all packed at the back of the bakkie stopped the car and indicated that they too want a street wise two. My friend pointed something I hadn’t thought of before; the only time you see black people (Notice that coloureds and Indians hardly ever get featured on a KFC ad as well) on a KFC ad is when they advertise a “street wise two”.

I haven’t willingly consumed a KFC product since then. Don’t get me wrong, if someone offers me a KFC product you best believe I’m going to eat it! I just won’t buy KFC with my money. Since the incident, I’ve seen different KFC ads come and go but one thing remains: Family feast ads feature white folk, Budget range ads feature black folk. It’s like KFC is trying to say to black people f**k your money, we don’t want you as a customer unless you buy our cheap product. I know about marketing and shit, I know that certain products are marketed and developed for lower LSM consumer (a PC way of saying poor people) and some for high LSM Consumers (the middle class) but still, what KFC is doing can’t be right. I’ve noticed that it’s only KFC that does this, other products do feature blacks and other PoC in ads for products that are targeted at higher LSM groups.

I’m a pedestrian, I enjoy walking, in fact I could go as far as saying there isn’t a street in the Johannesburg CBD that I haven’t walked on. When I was still a UJ-DFC campus student I used to walk from Ellis Park stadium all the way to Bree street taxi rank in Newtown. One thing I notice when I walk the street of Jo’burg is the ridiculous amount of KFC outlets out there, in the Jo’burg CBD and especially downtown Jo’burg there are probably 3 KFC outlets in a 100 metre radius and the outlets are always packed. It is very rare to find a white person in the Jo’burg CBD. So it’s safe to assume that the people going into those countless KFC outlet are black, my question is: are all those people buying ”street wise two”? Anyhoo that is just my opinion on the matter, feel free to add yours.

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One thought on “My Beef with Kentucky Fried Chicken

  1. I see where you are coming from dude especially since this problem has been going on in the states as well. food for thought (no pun intended) the fact that KFC's in black areas have more of the cheap deals (like the under $2 menu) I was recently in what is considered the ghetto I saw two KFC's stores in seeing distance of one another in the same neighbourhood but I was hard pressed to find the local fresh produce market! I ended up getting KFC for dinner and noticed they had a stack of KFC coupons in the store for the two piece feed etc etc. In my parents neighbourhood it is a walk to KFC and I never find coupons in store.

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