Kentucky Fried Chicken (United Kingdom)

KFC Sorry

Photo credit: Adweek

What was the Accusation?

Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) restaurants throughout the U.K. and Ireland were not able to get fresh chicken. As a result, hundreds of stores were forced to close for nearly a week with KFC blaming a supply chain disruption on the transition from Bidvest Logistics to DHL. The U.K. is KFC’s largest market in Europe and one of its top five globally. The shortage saw a 5% operating profit decline in the first quarter. Thousands of patrons were unable to enjoy KFC chicken with many resorting to calling the police. KFC used a humorous public relations approach to explain the chicken shortage. Several unique ads played upon the restaurant’s letters and a familiar child’s riddle.

Key Apologia Strategies:

Mortification, Shifting Blame, Bolstering, Corrective Action




Box with Text

A chicken restaurant without any chicken. It’s not ideal. Huge apologies to our customers, especially those who travelled out of their way to find we were closed. And endless thanks to our KFC team members and our franchise partners for working tirelessly to improve the situation. It’s been a hell of a week, but we’re making progress, and every day more and more fresh chicken is being delivered to our restaurants. Thank you for bearing with us.


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Petroff, A. (2018, February 27). KFC Apologies for chicken shortage with a hilarious hidden message. Retrieved from CNNMoney:

Wolgelenter, M. (2018, February 23). From KFC, a 3-Letter Apology for Its U.K. Chicken Crisis. Retrieved from The New York Times:

Wood, Z. (2018 , March 8). KFC returns to original supplier after chicken shortage fisasco. Retrieved from The Guardian: