Restaurant Brands International Inc, the parent company of Burger King, announced that it has removed its most iconic item, the Whopper, off cheap menus and would increase menu pricing again this year to cover increasing costs.
The RBI shares increased more than 3% after beating fourth-quarter earnings projections, boosted by strong online sales and stronger-than-expected same-store sales growth at Burger King in the United States and Tim Hortons in Canada.
Restaurant chains are increasing prices due to increased expenses for transportation, labor, and commodities such as chicken, coffee, and cooking oils. McDonald's Corp and coffeehouse giant Starbucks Corp saw their revenues dwindle due to the record inflation levels and personnel shortages.
Burger King's Whopper - produced with a quarter pound of grilled beef - is an "iconic" product that has "been on this cheap fundamental platform for far too long," Restaurant Brands CEO, Jose Cil, told Reuters in an interview. The business, which frequently serves lower-income clients, pulled the burger from its two-for-five bargain but may provide limited discounts on the burger in the future.
Burger King also announced that it would discontinue sales of several less-popular menu items, including sundaes, whipped toppings, and chocolate milk. Jose Cil refused to specify a schedule for pricing increases in general in 2022.
Restaurant Brands International, situated in Toronto, Ontario, posted total revenue of $1.55 billion, above analysts' expectations of $1.52 billion.
However, comparable sales in the United States declined, partly because specific locations had to cut operations by an average of one hour due to staffing shortages.
Popeyes' sales soared even during the worst of the epidemic with the debut of its fried chicken sandwich in 2019. The sandwich was so famous that most rivals, including McDonald's and Yum Brands Inc's KFC, launched identical products.