The average South Korean annual chicken consumption per person is around 15.4 kg. As per the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs of South Korea, 2019, this is half of an OECD average of 27.5 kg, and one-third compared to the U.S. (44.5 kg). Nevertheless, when it comes to chicken consumption, South Korea holds an extraordinary record. It’s a fact that there are more than 36,000 fried chicken restaurants in South Korea.
Historically, Koreans have boiled or steamed chickens when cooking rather than frying. However, credit goes to the U.S. soldiers who were stationed in Korea after the Korean war. As a result, fried chicken became more popular in South Korea. Following that, more and more fried chicken restaurant started to appear.
Amongst the hamburger, pizza, and fried chicken (leaders of the fast-food) industry, fried chicken’s market size is by far the largest. It is the most beloved fast food in South Korea, especially as a late-night snack. According to research conducted by Statistics South Korea in 2016, the number of fried chicken restaurants in South Korea is more than the number of hamburger, pizza, and sandwich restaurants combined twice.
Why is fried chicken so special in South Korea? In line with this, Real Research has launched a survey to know why South Koreans like chicken so much and how they consume it. Read more below to know the survey results.
- Notably, 48.87% of the respondents said that they order fried chicken when their family wants it. To specify the type of family member, 57.40% order fried chicken because of children.
- 90% said that they prefer having fried chicken for dinner. Meanwhile, 20.50% prefer it as a late-night snack.
- 57% responded that they usually have fried chicken on Fridays and 31.77% on Saturdays.
- ‘Kyochon’ scooped the first position with (36.63%) of the respondents stating it as their favorite fried chicken brand.
Interestingly, 48.87% Order Chicken Because Their Family Wants It
Results on the Real Research online survey application show that 48.87% of the respondents order fried chicken because their family wants it. On the other hand, 18.20% say they order ‘When I want to have some beer’, also, 28.47% answered ‘When I want some late night snack’. More so, 1.43% say ‘After hanging out with friends’. Lastly, 3.03% do not eat fried chicken.
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Furthermore, to get detailed results, Real Research went on to obtain the survey’s cross-analysis data for the family members. As a result, from the group that said ‘because their family wants it’ 57.40% order fried chicken as they have children. Meanwhile, 54.79% order fried chicken resulting from the fact that they have a spouse.
You can easily come across a scene on South Korean TV that shows a working mom or dad picking up fried chicken for their family. This doesn’t just happen on television, people really do buy fried chicken on their way home from work. Hence, fried chicken is the most favored meal for spouses and children.
The Majority Eat Fried Chicken on Fridays (40.57%) and Saturdays (31.77%)
In South Korea, there are words used for Friday and Saturday nights – “Burning Fridays” and “Burning Saturdays”. It means that you can “Burn the night away by drinking and hanging out with your friends” because you don’t have to go to work the next day. That is why most South Koreans responded that they usually have fried chicken on Fridays (40.57%) and Saturdays (31.77%).
Let us have a look at the results of those that state they have fried chicken from Sunday to Thursday. To begin with, Monday has (3.70%), then Tuesday (3.87%), followed by Wednesday (6.70%). Additionally, for Thursday (5.70%), and Sunday (7.70%). This clearly reflects that a large number of people prefer having chicken on Fridays and Saturdays instead of having it on any other day.
70.90% of the South Koreans Prefer Having Fried Chicken for Dinner
Except for times when fried chicken is served in school or at a workplace for lunch, South Koreans seem to have a preferred specific time for having chicken. Therefore, 70.90% of the respondents replied that they usually have fried chicken for dinner. Likewise, 20.50% replied that they have fried chicken late at night.
Only 1.33% note that they have fried chicken for breakfast. Meanwhile, 4.30% prefer having fried chicken for lunch.
‘Kyochon’ Chosen As the Most Favorite Fried Chicken Brand
Our Real Research online survey shows that the most favored fried chicken brand is ‘Kyochon’ (36.63%). Kyochon chicken began operating in 1995. They became hugely successful by applying soy-based sauce on their products instead of hot sauce, which went well with children as well as adults. At the moment, the honey-based sauce is still in fashion.
After Kyochon, the most popular fried chicken brands are Goobne (10.77%), BBQ (14.20%), Cheogajip (3.77%), BHC (5.87%), and Hosigi (4.33%) among the list.
As of 2018, South Korea recorded 84 fried chicken brands. With so many brands fighting for a limited market, the competition is fierce, and people’s preferences vary. New menus are developed, and price wars are not uncommon. Thanks to the franchises’ competition, unique and different styles of fried chicken are readily available for anyone.
Fried chicken seems to play an important role in keeping the family happy and satisfied as 48.87% said they have fried chicken when their family wants to, as opposed to 1.43% who said that they have fried chicken when hanging out with colleagues. Also, 18.20% have fried chicken on drinking nights with friends.
|Survey Title||Detailed Survey on Fried Chicken Consumption in South Korea|
|Duration||2021-06-19 – 2021-06-20|
|Number of Participants||3,000|
|Demographics||Males and females, aged 20 and above|
|Participating Countries||South Korea|