This week, fresh takes on the classics are on the radar. Franchises are vying for market reach by channeling what helped them get where they are today with an added modern flavor. Old favorites strike a balance with meeting the tastes of consumers in this edition of Friday Franchising News.
Chick-fil-A Introduces New Breakfast Sandwich
It’s been six years since fast food favorite Chick-fil-A added a new item to its morning menu. With the renewed focus on breakfast showing increased growth in the quick service sector, Chick-fil-A has taken note with the creation of a brand new breakfast sandwich. The new protein-packed sandwich is made up of egg whites, American cheese and grilled chicken atop a multi-grain English muffin. The debut of the the low calorie Egg White Grill marks the introduction of grilled chicken to the franchise’s morning menu. It will replace the spicy chicken biscuit.
Captain D’s Leads Way in Seafood Sector
The seafood franchise has announced 2016 continues to be marked with upward momentum. Captain D’s has closed out the second quarter of the year with its 19th consecutive quarter of positive growth, generating a 3.1 percent system wide same store sales increase. The fast casual seafood restaurant is the number one seafood chain by average unit volume and credits ongoing menu innovation, a new restaurant beach design and a brand focused “Who was Captain D” TV campaign as key factors to drive consistent growth.
Full Service Chains Focus Back on Beef
Quick serve restaurants have been been maintaining momentum and full service franchises are seeking ways to keep up in the competitive market. Chains are redirecting their attention back to their roots and reminding consumers of what made them famous. Chili’s is introducing a craft burger menu that pays homage to burgers as a staple from when the brand launched in 1975. Applebee’s is also channeling protein-packed beef boosts, with a new taste and flavor profile for about 40 percent of menu items to accompany replacing gas grills with new wood-fired grills in all 1,900 US locations. They have also transitioned to selling USDA Choice steaks and trained 6,000 meat cutters to slice beef that no longer comes frozen.
Denny’s Appeals to Americans with Pancakes
The breakfast oriented chain is launching a new pancake recipe that claims to be “50 percent fluffier” than the previous recipe. The new recipe includes real eggs, fresh buttermilk and a hint of vanilla and will be part of a new menu of indulgent pancake offerings. New cooking procedures, equipment and behaviors will accompany training with expenses being kept to a minimum to offset the lack of an equipment subsidy for franchisees. Denny’s hopes that return visits will further aid costs for the 90 percent of locations owned by franchisees. A broadcast and Internet promotion will freshen up the brand with a “Pancake Rejection Simulator” and Mr. Fluffy pancake character.