Costco exec makes major announcement about $1.50 hot dog combo

Costco Hot Dogs

Costco food court signage is seen in Teterboro, New Jersey, Wednesday, February 28, 2024. (Stephanie Keith/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Gary Millerchip, Costco’s new CFO and executive vice president, shared a candid message with investors and analysts Thursday afternoon during his first earnings conference call.

“To dispel some recent media speculation, I also want to confirm that the $1.50 hot dog price is safe,” Millerchip said, shortly after welcoming participants to its third-quarter earnings conference call of the society.

The price of Costco’s hot dog and soda combo, at $1.50, has remained unchanged since the item was added to menus in the mid-1980s. But recent comments from Richard Galanti, former Costco chief financial officer , have left some consumers uncertain about the item’s future.

Galanti, like Millerchip, had frequently discussed the price of the combined deal during Costco’s quarterly earnings calls, and once remarked in 2022 that the $1.50 price would stay in place “forever.” However, earlier this year, Galanti appeared to indicate that Millerchip might eventually raise the price, telling Bloomberg that the combined deal’s price of $1.50 might only be “probably safe for a while” after he leaves.

The history of Costco’s popular hot dog — and its unchanged price — dates back to Costco co-founder James Sinegal, according to former Costco CEO Craig Jelinek.

Costco Hot Dog
An employee prepares hot dogs at a Costco in Palm Beach, Florida. (Lindsey Nicholson/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

“I came to (Sinegal) once and said, ‘Jim, we can’t sell this hot dog for fifty dollars.’ We’re losing our backs,” Jelinek recalled in a 2018 interview with 425 Business. “And he said, ‘If you lift the damn hot dog, I’ll kill you.’ Understand it.’

The company soon began making its own hot dogs (instead of buying them elsewhere) to cut costs, Jelinek said.

Galanti also said in previous earnings conference calls that revenue from other areas of Costco’s business helped keep food court costs lower. If true, the $1.50 hot dog deal could remain in effect for the foreseeable future. In its latest earnings report, Costco reported a 9.1% increase in sales from the third quarter of 2023, beating expectations.

“We’re seeing wins in several different categories,” Costco CEO Ron Vachris said Thursday.

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Aimant les mots, Sara Smith a commencé à écrire dès son plus jeune âge. En tant qu'éditeur en chef de son journal scolaire, il met en valeur ses compétences en racontant des récits impactants. Smith a ensuite étudié le journalisme à l'université Columbia, où il est diplômé en tête de sa classe. Après avoir étudié au New York Times, Sara décroche un poste de journaliste de nouvelles. Depuis dix ans, il a couvert des événements majeurs tels que les élections présidentielles et les catastrophes naturelles. Il a été acclamé pour sa capacité à créer des récits captivants qui capturent l'expérience humaine.
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