NEW YORK – Burger King Worldwide Inc. is phasing out its lower-fat Satisfries French fries at approximately two-thirds of its restaurants in the United States and Canada, according to a Bloomberg Businessweek report. They will remain as a permanent menu item at 2,500 locations.
"Earlier this week, franchisees in North America were given the option to continue offering Satisfries in markets where this game-changing product continues to perform well," Burger King said in a statement.
The move to discontinue Satisfries, which are designed to absorb less oil than regular fries, comes less than a year after Burger King introduced them last September. At the time, the company stated that customers would determine how long they would be offered.
Satisfries were designed to improve Burger King's health image and attract more nutrition-conscious customers, according to the report. A small box of Satisfries has 270 calories, 11 grams of fat and 300 milligrams of sodium compared to 340 calories, 15 grams of fat and 480 milligrams of sodium for regular French fries.
The menu change comes as Burger King brings back its popular Chicken Fries, which debuted in 2005 and are made of French fry-shaped white meat chicken coated in crispy breading.
The differing response to the two French fry variants could be due to consumer views of French fries in general. "French fries are an indulgence, just like ice cream," according to Technomic Inc. Executive Vice President Bob Goldin. "You don't eat them if you're worried about your diet."
Burger King recently reported that its revenue decreased 6.1 percent to $261.2 million during the second quarter, although same-store sales in the U.S. and Canada rose 0.4 percent. The fast-food chain also noted it is introducing fewer new products in order to make its kitchens faster and less complex.