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KF-C is for cynical

One might think that the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the huge American breast cancer charity, would have been so embarrassed by the torrent of bad press about its partnership with fast food giant Kentucky Fried Chicken that the only option would be to get out even faster.

But Komen’s powers-that-be obviously believed that disparaging coverage of the fundraiser called Buckets for the Cure was way better than none at all. They were apparently right, sad to say. Komen clearly anticipated a big dust-up, and here’s how it justified sticking with KFC despite the flood of criticism citing connections between poor diet (including deep fried, hormone-laced fast food) and higher rates of cancer in obese women:

“We were mindful of the link between fried foods and obesity and worked closely with KFC to ensure that the promotion highlighted KFC’s grilled chicken and vegetables, and that the www.bucketsforthecure.com website contained educational and engagement messaging we consider so vital,” says a submission by Komen to CauseMarketingForum.com. “Ultimately, however, we believe that a decision about what to eat is the consumer’s to make.”

Wonder what the folks at Komen think about the highly promoted – and very successful – new KFC Original Recipe® Double Down Sandwich which replaces the bun with ‘two thick and juicy boneless white meat chicken filets’ that envelopes two pieces of bacon, two melted slices of Monterey Jack and pepper jack cheese and, of course, the Colonel’s famous sauce – all adding up to a whopping 32 grams of fat per serving. (Not available in Canada. Yet.)

Buckets for the Cure once again proves that tried-and-true advertising adage, Cash Conquers All. Or, as our old friend Sharyn Inward famously said: “Run for The Cure, Sponsored by The Cause.” For more along that line, have a look at the piece The Colbert Report broadcast on April 29th about the Komen-KFC connection, when funnyman Steve struck back. It’s worth a few minutes to shake off your KFC-Komen disgust at this Comedy Network link. Be warned: you’ll first have to endure a short commercial about Coors Lite, then Colbert’s take on the recent rediscovery of the three-foot long Giant Palouse Earthworm!

Also in this issue on An Ounce …