Burger King Plans Chicken Sandwich to Rival Sister Chain Popeyes

Almost two years after Popeyes kicked off the chicken-sandwich wars, sister company Burger King is releasing its own contender.

The burger chain, owned by Popeyes parent Restaurant Brands International Inc., is introducing a new breaded chicken sandwich across the U.S. on June 3. The company said it’s been “perfecting” the recipe for two years, or essentially since the launch of Popeyes’ seemingly ordinary sandwich -- a piece of fried meat with pickles and mayo -- that ignited a frenzy in the summer of 2019.

The popularity of that sandwich, plus more recent sandwich roll outs at McDonald’s Corp. and KFC, has companies around the U.S. reporting rising poultry prices and intermittent shortages. But Ellie Doty, chief marketing officer for Burger King North America, said Burger King isn’t worried about the squeeze ahead of its nationwide launch in more than 7,000 restaurants.

“There have definitely been a lot of surprises and shortages, not only in our industry but in many. And chicken is one of them for sure. We have set up a robust supply chain,” she said. “Right now, we’re closely monitoring chicken; we’re closely monitoring pickles.”

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