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“Chicken has been identified as a growth opportunity in the industry, with chicken almost being [twice] beef size around the world and growing at a faster rate, “Credit Suisse analyst Lauren Silberman wrote in a recent note.” We expect the competition to intensify in 2021.

They certainly are. Here is what is new in the clash of chickens.

Burger King

The chain is kicking their current crispy chicken sandwich and replacing it with a new hand-breaded version. The new item, original or spicy, is made with a tasty signature sauce and served with pickles on a potato bun.

“Chicken is a big business for us,” said Ellie Doty, director of marketing for Burger King. “If the guest chooses a premium chicken sandwich, they may go somewhere else now,” she added. “We are improving our game.”

Burger King said the sandwich would cost around $ 4 to $ 1 less than their current sandwich. It will be available in its 7,000 American restaurants later this year.


Fried chicken sandwich: McDonald’s and Taco Bell debut in new versions
The burger chain’s three new chicken sandwiches finally went on sale this week. They come in three versions, including a crispy chicken sandwich topped with pickles and served on a potato roll, a spicy chicken sandwich that adds spicy pepper sauce, and a deluxe chicken sandwich that comes with lettuce, tomatoes and mayonnaise.

The chain teased a new selection of sandwiches on Investor Day last year, with Joe Erlinger, president of McDonald’s USA, explaining that the chicken is a good bet for the company.

“Globally, the category of chicken is almost twice the size of beef,” he said at the time. “It is growing faster and represents a significant opportunity,” he said. “Developing a reputation for excellent chicken is one of our biggest aspirations. We want customers to choose McDonald’s for chicken.”

Sandwich prices vary by city.

Taco Bell

Fried chicken sandwich: McDonald’s and Taco Bell debut in new versions
Taco + sandwich = success? That’s what Taco Bell is aiming for with its new Crispy Chicken Taco Sandwich.

It’s a creative concoction: The all-white piece of chicken is marinated in jalapeño buttermilk and fried with a coating of crunchy tortilla chips, served in a puffy taco-shaped bun. It is then topped with a creamy chipotle sauce. There’s also a spicy version that includes an extra garnish of jalapeño slices.

Taco Bell is only serving tacos at participating restaurants in Nashville, Tennessee, and Charlotte, NC, starting March 11 for $ 2.49. Nationwide deployment is planned for later this year.


Fried chicken sandwich: McDonald’s and Taco Bell debut in new versions
Wendy’s threw a grenade into the chicken war with its newcomer, a Jalapeño Popper Sandwich.

The $ 5.99 sandwich is topped with jalapeños, including a flavored cream cheese spread and six slices of pepper on top. It also includes three slices of bacon, two cheeses (cheddar and pepper jack) and a toast.

“Consumers are looking for flavor, and unfortunately there are boring and bland options from our competition,” Carl Loredo, Wendy’s chief marketing officer, told CNN Business. “They’re super focused on flavor and it’s something they want and need right now.”

The Spicy Sandwich is the latest take on Wendy’s recently revived Fried Chicken Sandwich that hit restaurants last fall.

– Danielle Wiener-Bronner of CNN Business contributed to this report.


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