The Chick-fil-A Story
Chick-fil-A is an Atlanta, Georiga based restaurant chain that is closed every Sunday. It is the United States second largest fast food company centered around chicken. The restaurant chain made its big break in the southern United States. The company has since moved into the southwest, midwest, and into the Rocky Mountains. In July of 2006, had stores open in 37 states, and the District of Columbia. Chick-fil-A has over 1,300 locations.
Starting out in malls across the south (most of its first several locations), it has expaned into an exteremly popular sit-down or drive-through restaurant. Many Chick-fil-A's are popping up at airports, hospitals, and universities.
In the Beginning.
S. Truett Cathy opened Dwarf House (or Dwarf Grill) in the Atlanta suburb of Hapville in 1946, near a Ford plant. The Ford employees would catch a bite to eat between shifts occasionaly. The first Chick-fil-A opened in 1967 in the Greenbriar Mall in Atlanta. Hamburgers were dominating the fast-food business, so Cathy invented the chicken sandwich. Thus the slogan "We Didn't Invent the Chicken, Just the Chicken Sandwich", was born. The chicken sandwich is still the main item on the menu. Cathy's idea for the chicken sandwich helped him discover that pressure cooking the chicken in peanut oil allowed for a fast preparation time, meaning the food would get to the customer faster. The sandwich comes with two pickles because that was the only condiment that Cathy had avalible at the time.
When the business was opening a restaurant in Goodyear, Arizona, on October 16, 2003, the first 100 customers would receive coupons for a free combo meal once a week for an entire year. Obviously, this was a big deal. The event got internet exposure, there was free ice cream, karaoke, klieg lights, and raffles. Now, every time a new chick-fil-A location opens, there is the same deal for the first 100 customers. People will camp out days before the opening just make sure they are one of the lucky 100 people.
Cows vs. Chikin.
The "EAT MOR CHIKIN" slogan is the companys most popular. The cows, according to Chick-fil-A, are trying to get America to eat more chicken, and less beef. The cows encourage people not to eat the beef hamburgers usually sold at Burger King, McDonalds, and Wendy's. When the mad cow disease was causing a scare in 2003 and 2004, Chick-fil-A cancelled the cow comercials so that it did not look like the company was takling advantage of the disease to increase their sales. The cows took the place of the chicken, Doodles, who is the "C" in Chick-fil-A. Chick-fil-A customizes their advertising for different areas, connecting more with locals through jokes
S. Truett Cathy is a Southern Baptist. He has taught Sunday School for over 51 years. Cathy believes that business exists "to glorify God and be a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A." The business invests a lot of money into scholarships and community service. S. Truett Cathy also said,
"Our decision to close on Sunday was our way of honoring God and directing our attention to things more important than our business. If it took seven days to make a living with a restaurant, then we needed to be in some other line of work. Through the years, I have never wavered from that position."
Chick-fil-A also supports groups such as Focus on the Family, Athletes in Action, and campus Crusade for Christ. Chick-fil-A also helps promote National Bible Week. S. Truett Cathy is the chairman of the National Bible Week committee.
First there was the Peach Bowl. Then there was the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. Now it is the Chick-fil-A Bowl. This is a college football bowl game played in Atlanta, Georgia. Chick-fil-A has sponsored the gae since 1998. In 2006, the company gained full rights to the name of the bowl game for 5 years, and 22 million dollars.