McDonald's challenges KFC Christmas tradition

Thanks to a hugely successful advertising campaign in the 1970s that proclaimed "Kentucky for Christmas!" millions of Japanese have made KFC their traditional Christmas Day meal. This year, McDonald's is looking to get a slice of that business.

The burger giant has launched its Christmas Waku Waku Chicken Variety campaign. McDonald's started taking advance orders for the set meal on November 4 and selling over the counter at its more than 3,700 domestic outlets in early December.

The set includes two grilled chicken breasts, two five-piece boxes of Chicken McNuggets, two "shaka shaka" chicken pieces, which come with three flavours - cheese, black pepper and pizza - that must be added to the chicken, plus a mega-portion of fried potatoes.

And if that was not enough, McDonald's is also including one of three exclusive phone straps with each purchase and a new sour cream and onion sauce for the chicken nuggets.

The price of the meal is Y1,780 (€16.13) and the offer ends on December 25, the company said.

KFC is showing no signs of giving up on its loyal customer base as the festive season draws closer. The statues outside restaurants here of Colonel Saunders - the silver-haired Southern gent who came up with the secret recipe that made his meals so popular - have been outfitted in their traditional Santa Claus costumes.

KFC began its Christmas campaign all the way back in October and added a "Party Barrel" and "Premium Christmas Pack" to its existing line-up over the festive season.

The barrel includes eight pieces of chicken prepared in the secret way, salad, desserts and a 2010 Christmas souvenir dish, all for Y3,880 (€35.15), while the Christmas Pack has extra baked mushrooms stuffed with Parmesan cheese and a selection of chicken pieces served with rich Iwate Prefecture butter and a sauce, at a price of Y5,600 (€50.73).

And while McDonald's has been operating its Christmas campaign in the weeks running up to the big day, KFC launches its riposte on December 23rd and it will only run until the 25th.

It's all a long way from roast turkey with all the trimmings and Christmas pudding.



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