KFC is one of the most famous fast food chains, but do you know KFC? Are you looking to find interesting KFC statistics?

If so, continue reading below to discover some KFC facts and trends and learn a little more about this beloved iconic fast food chain!

KFC statistics in 2024

  • Harland Sanders founded KFC in 1930
  • Harland Sanders was awarded the title of colonel by the governor of Kentucky in 1936
  • In 1952, the first KFC restaurant was opened by Pete Harman in Salt Lake City
  • The first meal bucket was sold in 1957
  • KFC is present in 146 countries
  • There are over 26,000 KFC restaurants worldwide
  • KFC’s secret recipe is still a secret
  • Kentucky Fried Chicken didn’t become known as KFC until the 1990s
  • Buckethead is a guitarist who wears a KFC bucket on his head

Looking for the full list of KFC stats and have other questions you want me to answer? Well, keep reading to find the full list and more below!

1. Harland Sanders founded KFC in 1930

Harland Sanders started KFC in 1930 when he began selling his fried chicken near North Corbin, Kentucky, at a gas station he owned.

However, he realized that chicken was his specialty and not gasoline, so he turned the gas station into a restaurant and motel and decided to call it « Sanders’ Court & Cafe. »

2. In 1936, Harland Sanders received the title of honorary colonel

Harland Sanders became Colonel Sanders in 1936 when the governor of Kentucky awarded him the honorary title.

3. Pete Harman opened the first KFC restaurant in 1952

It wasn’t until 1952 that the first official KFC restaurant opened in Salt Lake City, Utah, and it was a franchise.

Additionally, this KFC location was operated by a restaurant owner named Peter Harman, whom Sanders met at a food seminar.

4. The first bucket meal was sold in 1957

Did you know that it wasn’t until 1957 that the bucket meal started and Pete Harman came up with the idea while selling a meal of 14 pieces of chicken with buns and gravy?

5. KFC operates in 146 counties

KFC has grown significantly since its beginnings in 1930, and today you can find it in over 146 countries!

6. There are over 26,000 KFC locations worldwide

Not only is KFC in over 146 countries, but there are over 26,000 KFC locations across the world, which is a pretty impressive feat, and it’s still growing.

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7. KFC’s secret recipe is still a secret

An interesting fact about KFC is that the 11 spices and herbs used for chicken have been secret since the beginning, and only a few people within the company know the recipe.

Additionally, the recipe is kept hidden under lock and key at KFC headquarters, and it is never meant to be revealed.

8. Kentucky Fried Chicken decided to go by KFC in the 1990s

Kentucky Fried Chicken decided to drop the name and stick with KFC in the 1990s when more people were becoming health conscious about fried chicken.

9. A guitarist named Buckethead wears a KFC bucket on his head

An interesting connection with KFC is that an American guitarist called Buckethead is famous for having worked with Guns N’ Roses over the years.

Additionally, the bucket that Buckethead was carrying is orange and has « Funeral » written on the side of the bucket.

10. Japanese eat KFC at Christmas

KFC is a famous restaurant all over the world, and an interesting fact is that Japanese people eat KFC on Christmas Day and the weeks leading up to Christmas.

Additionally, this tradition started in 1974 when KFC launched a marketing campaign that translates into English as « Kentucky for Christmas » called « Kurisumasu ni wa kentakki ».

11. KFC sells a pair of KFC Crocs

KFC is selling a pair of KFC crocs, because why not? Two pairs are available, one being a KFC bucket design for the bottom of the shoe and the upper having two chicken drumsticks.

Plus, the chicken drumsticks are removable and chicken flavored, which is a great item to buy if you’re a KFC fan!

12. KFC has around 14,000 employees

There are approximately 14,000 KFC employees worldwide, and that number has grown over the years as more restaurants open in various locations.

Additionally, people expect the number of employees to continue to increase in the coming years.

13. About 56% of KFC employees are women

Did you know that most KFC employees are women, dominating men by 56% to 44% on average?

However, the gender composition of a store can change quickly and may also depend on other factors such as location.

14. More than 99% of KFC restaurants are franchised

14. More than 99% of KFC restaurants are franchised

Since the first official KFC restaurant was a franchise, a franchise model would be how the business progressed, and over 99% of KFC locations are franchised.

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15. KFC sauce is not Colonel Sanders approved

An interesting fact about KFC is that Colonel Sanders disapproves of the sauce used today.

On top of that, KFC sauce was replaced before 1970 with a cheaper version that was less labor intensive than the original.

16. KFC’s 2021 revenue exceeded $31 billion

KFC is one of the largest and most famous fast food chains in the world, so it’s no surprise that in 2021, revenues exceeded $31 billion!

Additionally, this was more than the $26 billion in revenue in 2020 and more than the $27 billion in revenue that KFC earned in 2019.

17. KFC was first launched in China in 1987

KFC was launched in China in 1987, and it was the first Western restaurant to come to China. Today, it’s incredibly popular, with over 4,500 locations across the country!

Additionally, KFC restaurants in China serve more than the standard menu in America, with local specialties such as Tree-Fungi Salad.

That said, you can still get the regular KFC favorites, and each menu consists of almost 50 items on average in China.

18. There is a Colonel Sanders video game

Did you know that Colonel Sanders is so beloved that there is a video game dedicated to him called « Colonel Quest? » »

Specifically, this video game is about the life of Colonel Sanders, and the main objective of the game is to collect chicken drumsticks.

19. KFC employees stay with the company for an average of 2.6 years

One statistic I found interesting about KFC employees is that most stay with the company for an average of 2.6 years, which is quite a long time for a fast food restaurant.

20. KFC’s parent company is Yum! Brands

Yum! Brands is the parent company of KFC and owns many other fast food brands, including Taco Bell and Pizza Hut.

21. KFC has a brand value of $8.3 billion

KFC’s brand value is $8.3 billion, which is huge, and it makes the Forbes list every year as one of the best companies in the world.

22. 52% of employees have a high school diploma

52% of KFC employees have a high school diploma, making it the most common level of education attained by those who work at the restaurant.

23. 40% of KFC employees are between 18 and 20 years old

An interesting statistic about KFC employees is that 40% of all employees who work for the company are between the ages of 18 and 20, and only 3% are over 40!

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How many customers does KFC serve daily?

KFC serves around 12 million people every day, which is an incredible number and shows the popularity of KFC all over the world!

How much does a KFC franchise earn?

The profit from a KFC franchise can range from $942,000 to over $1,000,000 per year, depending on the location and popularity of that particular store.

Additionally, profitability depends on how the manager manages the location.

However, no one knows how much franchisees earn since Yum! Brands does not publicly disclose this information.

How much do I need to open a KFC?

It’s not cheap to open a KFC store, and the franchise fee is around $45,000, plus you need to factor in startup fees and costs, which can vary between $1.2 and $2.5 millions of dollars !

Additionally, a 5% fee must be deducted each month from the store’s monthly income.

What is the busiest KFC in the world?

The busiest KFC location in the world is Beijing KFC Railway Station, located in Beijing, China.

Which countries don’t have KFC?

While you may think KFC is everywhere, that’s not true, and some countries don’t even have a KFC location, including the following:

  • Fiji
  • Norway
  • Israel
  • Yemen
  • Zimbabwe
  • Syria
  • Haiti
  • Andorra
  • Guyana
  • Iran

Why does KFC taste different in different countries?

If you travel abroad, you may have noticed that KFC food tastes different because KFC allows each franchise owner to incorporate local flavors.

For example, KFC allows franchise owners to add local foods to the menu and want the food to be local enough to bring people to the restaurant and order food.

To learn more, you can also read our articles on KFC UK complaints, KFC hiring process and KFC business model.

Conclusion

There are several interesting facts about KFC, including that KFC started in 1930 in Kentucky with Harland Sanders.

Additionally, the first KFC restaurant opened in 1956 in Salt Lake City, a franchise operated by Pete Harman, and now over 99% of KFC locations are franchised.

Today, there are more than 26,000 KFC locations in more than 146 counties, and it is one of the most recognized brands in the world, with 2021 revenue of more than $31 billion!

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