KFC: Socially Responsible or Sending Mixed Messages?
You may have seen the TV ads promoting KFC's partnership with the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
In the ads, KFC pledges to donate money to the Komen foundation for local breast cancer education, screening and treatment programs. Fifty cents from every pink campaign bucket-instead of the typical KFC red buckets-purchased by storeowners will go to the effort, according to a statement of KFC's website.
But bloggers have criticized KFC over the promotion, citing National Cancer Institute research that fried or barbecued meats are associated with an increased cancer risk, including breast cancer.
"I don't think that buying fried chick by the buck is a good way to fight breast cancer," Washington Post blogger Jennifer LaRue Huget wrote.
About 55 percent of Huget's readers agreed that the promotion was misguided and made both KFC and the Komen foundation look bad.
Others have downplayed KFC's breast cancer promotion.
"It's chicken for fried's sake. No one's making us buy it and the fact that the bucket's pink isn't going to change America's current eating habits I don't care if the money's grilled, extra crispy, or original recipe, if it's part of finding a cure for breast cancer, this Fry Girl says, 'Pass me a drumstick,'" Phoenix New Times blogger Laura Hahnefeld wrote.
The promotion comes at a time when retired military leaders are declaring that America's obesity epidemic and poor nutrition are affecting prospective recruits
In addition, KFC is facing criticism for its new "Double Down sandwich": essentially, two slices of cheese, two slices of bacon between two pieces of fried chicken breast, instead of bread.
Treehugger.com called it the "vilest food product created by man," while noting that KFC is trying to take advantage of the outraged buzz that the Double Down creates.
"It's a marketing campaign that capitalizes on our worst impulse-the impulse to say 'Screw it.' It's a good thing that this sort of viral-marketing-by-flouting-the-general-good tends to only be successful occasionally and in niches like fast food menu items," Treehugger blogger Brian Merchant wrote.
What do you think? Do you think KFC's partnership with the Komen foundation is a good thing? Or does it send mixed messages?
How much do you think the KFC-Komen partnership will benefit breast cancer research and the Komen foundation? How much do you think KFC will benefit from the association?
How socially responsible is KFC for entering this promotional campaign while also introducing products like the Double Down?
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