15 Interesting Facts About KFC

Did you know that KFC’s famous bucket meal was first introduced in 1957?

KFC is a globally recognized fast-food brand, with over 18,000 outlets in more than 115 countries. It’s no surprise that KFC has achieved such success; who doesn’t love a good bucket meal or pack of popcorn nuggets?

Despite the health-focused world we live in today, there will always be a demand for fast food.

Here are 15 facts about the “poultry prince” and his empire:

Harland Sanders began selling his world-famous chicken in 1930 from a petrol station near North Corbin, Kentucky, called “Sanders Court & Café.” The first “Kentucky Fried Chicken” franchise opened in Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1952.

Although not a military colonel, Sanders was given the title by then-Governor Ruby Lafoon of the state of Kentucky in 1937, alongside 5,000 others. Governor Lawrence Wetherby later re-commissioned Sanders as a colonel, and this was when he started wearing his famous white suit, goatee, and string tie.

The first bucket meal, a popular KFC option, was sold in 1957 by Sanders’ first franchisee, Pete Harman, in Salt Lake City. The meal included 14 pieces of chicken, five bread rolls, and a pint of gravy.

American guitarist Buckethead, known for his work with Guns ‘n’ Roses, wore a KFC bucket on his head during performances with an orange label reading “funeral.”

KFC was the first western fast-food franchise to launch in China in 1987. It now has 4,563 outlets across the country, each with a 50-item menu featuring well-known chicken dishes and lesser-known local dishes like tree-fungi salad.

When Colonel Harland Sanders passed away in 1980, Kentucky Governor John Brown Jr. ordered that every State building flag be flown at half-mast for four days to honor him.

Sanders’ friend and the first franchisee, Pete Harman, was the first to use the phrase “Kentucky Fried Chicken” in his restaurant. The catchphrase was coined by the sign painter Harman had hired.

Sanders initially preferred to pan-fry his chicken, but it took too long to be viable. He switched to using a pressure cooker, despite the risk of explosion due to poor design, because it gave the chicken a taste similar to pan-frying.

Sanders sold his company for $2 million to investors in 1964, who guaranteed him a place on the board as a quality controller and a lifetime salary, and he continued to appear in commercials.

Christmas is not a national holiday in Japan, but KFC has become a popular western tradition for a Christmas meal. The “Kentucky for Christmas!” campaign, which included champagne, saw an estimated 3.6 million households have KFC for Christmas in 2015.

According to KFC itself, the original recipe was created in 1940.

A survey in 1976 ranked Colonel Sanders as the second most recognizable celebrity.

KFC is a well-known brand that has had its fair share of catchphrase mishaps. In 1991, the abbreviation KFC was introduced when they realized the negative connotations of the word “Fried” in their original name, “Kentucky Fried Chicken.” Additionally, their famous slogan “Finger Lickin’ Good” was poorly translated to “eat your fingers off” in Chinese for their first outlets in the country. Despite these blunders, KFC is still a major force in the fast food industry, evidenced by its 705 international restaurant openings in 2015 alone. The brand’s popularity is further highlighted by its mind-blowing feats, such as the creation of an 87500 square foot logo in the Area-51 desert that is visible from space. Even with setbacks, KFC’s founder Colonel Sanders remained resilient and persevered through hardship to build his brand. While not everyone may enjoy their food or the corporation it has become, there is no denying that KFC is a force to be reckoned with.


1. What does KFC stand for?

KFC stands for Kentucky Fried Chicken. The restaurant chain was founded in Kentucky in 1952 by Colonel Harland Sanders, who developed the famous “secret recipe” of 11 herbs and spices that is still used to this day.

2. How many KFC locations are there worldwide?

As of 2021, KFC has over 24,000 locations in more than 145 countries around the world. The company is one of the largest fast food chains in the world, with a strong presence in Asia and the Middle East.

3. What are some of KFC’s most popular menu items?

KFC is known for its fried chicken, which comes in a variety of flavors and styles. Some of the most popular menu items include Original Recipe chicken, Extra Crispy chicken, and Hot & Spicy chicken. KFC also offers sides like mashed potatoes, coleslaw, and biscuits, as well as sandwiches, wraps, and salads.

4. Has KFC faced any controversy?

Like many fast food chains, KFC has faced some controversy over the years. One of the most notable incidents was in the early 2000s, when animal rights activists accused KFC of mistreating chickens in its supply chain. KFC has since taken steps to improve animal welfare standards and has worked with organizations like PETA to promote humane practices in the industry.

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