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The Fast-Food Breakfast Menu, Predicted Star of 2020, Is Flopping

Plus, Coke is debuting a coffee-flavored soda, and more news to start your day

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McDonald’s breakfast, with coffee, hash brown, and McMuffin. Photo: Kevin Khoo/Shutterstock

Without morning commuters, fast-food breakfast is still in a slump

2020 was supposed to be “the year of the breakfast wars,” multiple outlets predicted pre-pandemic. But now, four months into stay-at-home orders and social distancing, fast-food chains are continuing to see their breakfast sales slump, Business Insider reports.

Per BI, McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Dunkin’ recently reported that breakfast is continuing to drag down business, even as sales bounce back during the rest of the day. The issue is that customers still haven’t returned to their morning commute, and with it, their regular purchases of coffee or breakfast before work.

“There’s not much recovery in the breakfast day part right now. In terms of day part, breakfast has dried up,” Panera CEO Niren Chaudhary told BI’s Kate Taylor. “If anything, we’re seeing the consumption of coffee starting later in the morning than it used to, and kind of extend more through the day than it has done in the past.”

And in other news…

  • Coca-Cola’s coffee-and-soda drink, which has already been available in international markets, is making its U.S. debut: first to Coca-Cola subscribers this week, and then to the general public in January 2021. [Food Dive]
  • Tyson Foods, whose meat-processing plant workers have suffered coronavirus outbreaks amid allegedly insufficient safety protocols and PPE provisions, will now test its employees for COVID-19 every week. [WaPo]
  • McDonald’s is still thinking about chicken sandwiches, and rethinking ball pits, according to an interview with CEO Chris Kempczinski. [Time]
  • Chipotle is aiming to hire another 10,000 employees in the coming months. Several other fast-food chains have announced similar plans for hiring sprees, as they expect sales to bounce back. [Reuters]
  • Ikea’s new plant-based meatball, dubiously dubbed the “plant ball,” will be available in the U.S. this September. [The Takeout]
  • Martha Stewart had an indoor dinner party without apparent social distancing measures, which her fans and followers are not too happy about. [@marthastewart48/Instagram]

All AM Intel Coverage [E]

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