Anyone remember what you were up to this week last year? We remember what we were doing: tasting the Popeyes chicken sandwich for the first time. Takeout founder Kevin Pang deemed the sandwich/cultural phenomenon superior to the widely beloved Chick-fil-A equivalent, praising it for achieving “a spiciness level that most Louisiana food aficionados could at least respect.” Rare in the fast food world, to be sure.
The sandwich is celebrating one year of going national and rippling across American culture in seismic fashion. A press release emailed to The Takeout has provided some interesting factoids about this fast food item’s utter dominance:
- Popeyes sold 203 million chicken sandwiches in the past year
- 405 million pickles have been used on chicken sandwiches since the launch
- Texas sold the most chicken sandwiches in the past 12 months
- The most sandwiches sold by one store in one day was 3,582 sandwiches on November 3, 2019
From where we’re sitting in August 2020, in many ways August 2019 feels positively quaint. Popeyes, hoping to spur us all to reflect fondly on yesteryear, has launched a new campaign: “At least we still have The Sandwich.” And, according to a press release, it also hopes that we look ahead to the future, skipping over the disastrous present. So it has decided to kick off the Times Square Ball Drop 135 days/19 weeks/4.5 months early in a “much-needed countdown to 2021.”
The countdown begins today in Times Square—and Popeyes is making customers aware of it with a full-page ad in the New York Times. But a countdown clock that inches ever closer to the end of 2020 might have the unintended effect of making the year feel much, much longer. And if that’s the case, well... all the more time to enjoy some fried chicken on a bun.