By Tiffany Hsu
2:03 PM EDT, April 5, 2013
Trying to tear meat off a chicken skeleton is an annoyance for many Americans, especially younger ones. So KFC, in what it’s calling a “game changer” of a move, is ditching the bones.
The Kentucky-based chicken chain is rolling out its Original Recipe Boneless options on April 14 as it attempts to draw back patrons seeking more portable, convenient foods.
In the U.S., 80% of fried chicken is served off the bone in the form of strips, bites and filets, according to the company. Competitors such as McDonald’s, Chick-fil-A and Burger King are invading the chicken market with hassle-free chicken offerings such as wraps, nuggets and sandwiches.
That leaves a slim market for the drumstick, thigh and breast pieces KFC is known for serving up. Hence the new boneless launch, which KFC says in a statement is “more than just a promotional product; it’s a new way of doing business.”
The solid pieces of chicken will become a “flagship” offering, according to the chain, which is offering a two-piece combo with a side order, biscuit and drink for $4.99. A 10-piece mixed bucket -- four boneless pieces and six pieces on-the-bone -- costs $14.99.
The chicken brand has undergone a “menu revolution” in recent months, KFC U.S. President John Cywinski said in a statement. The company has rolled out items such as its nugget-esque Bites, Dip’ems and the Li’l Bucket Kids Meals.
The debut of the boneless chicken will be accompanied by two 30-second commercials dubbed “I Ate the Bones!” The spots were directed by David O. Russell, who also headed up the Academy Award-nominated “Silver Linings Playbook.”
KFC, which is owned by Taco Bell and Pizza Hut parent Yum Brands Inc., has about 17,000 outlets worldwide. The boneless chicken will be served at the company’s 4,500 locations in the U.S.
Copyright © 2013, Los Angeles Times