McDonald’s Franchisees Squawk After Mighty Wings Fail to Take Off

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McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) may have perfected the hamburger, but it is clear that the world’s largest fast food chain still has some ground to cover when it comes to the chicken wing. McDonald’s franchisees aren’t happy with how poorly the chain’s Mighty Wings sold in their seasonal promotion in the fall, and now, some are blaming it on the Dollar Menu.

The Wall Street Journal reports that McDonald’s purchased approximately 50 million pounds of wings for a limited-time promotion in September, and approximately 20 percent of that inventory remains, according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke to the publication. The wings are now in frozen storage and will be set free once the Oak Brook, Illinois-based company decides to offer another promotion, but McDonald’s franchisees are still disgruntled with their poor performance.

One franchisee told the Journal, “Mighty Wings are proving once agin that we can’t sell premium items in large numbers because we still have the Dollar Menu.”

A number of factors have been cited for consumers’ disinterest in the wings, but along with Dollar Menu complaints, franchisees believe the Mighty Wings were priced too high — not to mention that they were too spicy. The chicken came in three-, five-, and 10-piece bone-in chicken wing deals that started at $2.99. Even CEO Don Thompson admitted in late October that the wings’ price “was not considered the most competitive,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

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