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Return of Popeyes chicken sandwich in US prompts sellouts, fatal fight

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Popeyes franchisees hired more staff to cope with the return of its hit spicy chicken sandwich. After a launch earlier this year that collapsed under the weight of its own success, the chain swore it was fully stocked up this time.

[SINGAPORE] Popeyes franchisees hired more staff to cope with the return of its hit spicy chicken sandwich. After a launch earlier this year that collapsed under the weight of its own success, the chain swore it was fully stocked up this time.

At many locations across the US, from Chicago to Texas, the sandwich sold out anyway.

Restaurant Brands International Inc's Popeyes is battling for market share with KFC, Wendy's and the chain's biggest rival, Chick Fil A. The return of the sandwich fell on a Sunday, highlighting that their food is available seven days a week while Chick Fil A is closed on Sundays. The sandwich's abbreviated first run led Popeyes to one of its best quarters in two decades last quarter, with comparable sales up 9.7 per cent, the company said.

Yet the persistent supply chain issues raise questions about whether Popeyes will be able to fully capitalise on its own rising demand.

In one situation, events turned tragic. A fight over cutting in line at a Popeyes location in the Prince George's County suburbs of Washington DC ended with a person being stabbed and dying of their injuries, according to local TV station Fox 5 DC. Police said the deceased was in line for the chicken sandwich.

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