CULTURAL BUTONG #2: KFC’s Soaring Popularity in China
If Americans can all agree on one thing, it’s that Mcdonalds is the number one popular fast food joint in our country. It’s like our go-to because it is literally everywhere. What is there not to love? The food is dirt cheap, and you can grab it whenever you need it. The best part of McDs? They have convenient restrooms. Yes, you heard that right. So you know what to do when you’re on a roadtrip across the States and want a free place to do your thang without ever having to bother the clerk to unlock the door for ya (take a hint – drugstores and certain restaurants). And after you’ve relieved yourself and come out of the restroom, you will smell the aroma of Fish Fillet Burger with tangy tartar sauce and unwittingly drift to the cashier like a hungry zombie.
In China, it’s not McDonalds that take the cake, it’s KFC. Kentucky Fried Chicken is great and all, you say, but what? It’s more popular than McDonalds?! Now I haven’t been to all the States, but everywhere I have gone, American KFC has always been that deserted joint in the corner that is in danger of rotting away. McDs is like the big bully in the neighborhood who steals all the customers from the braces-and-glasses nerd that is KFC. Not so in China! And I’m glad. Last time I have been to a KFC in China, I knew what’s up. The 2 story place is not only magnificant and a welcoming atmosphere, the food is delicious! Somehow in China, they make burgers and Chicken and mashed potatoes BETTER. Maybe the cooks add a special sweet and sour sauce or fry their chicken to perfection. Plus I love that KFC-China have special menu items year round. I swear the last KFC I’ve been to in America did not have fried breakfast donuts or egg tarts on the menu. They sure know how to cater to the Chinese taste buds.
When it comes down to it, advertising is the key. Kentucky Fried Chicken billboards are everywhere in Beijing. You can find posters that feature specialty items and discounts from this food joint in the subway station and at bus stops. KFC commercials are played in every other internet video on Chinese video streaming sites. Sometimes when I visit Beijing, I turn the television on to watch some drama, and 90% of the time, I’ll see KFC or Pizza Hut commercials. It’s not annoying, which is surprising to say for a commercial, but I get fried chicken cravings whenever I see them.
So there you have it!
Now come to a Chinese KFC and treat yourself to a Chicken burger with scrumptuous egg tarts.