As game day approaches, pizza and chicken-wing restaurants are getting their game faces on. “The Super Bowl is the second biggest eating holiday of the year, after Thanksgiving. With the growing demand for wings, we are gearing up for this to be our biggest year yet,” said Charlie Morrison, Wingstop president and CEO.
Wingstop expects to sell more than 6-million wings at 550 locations across the country, up 15 percent over last year. Domino's Pizza predicts it will deliver more than 11-million slices and 2.5-million chicken wings nationwide, an 80% increase from a typical Sunday.
Conversely, high-end restaurants in Baltimore predict a slow weekend, as most fans prefer take out, fast-food or home parties, according to the Baltimore Business Journal. Restaurants like Woodberry Kitchen and Artifact Coffee and Roy's Hawaiian, say sales were slow during the playoffs and the Super Bowl will be no different. Some restaurants like Woodberry Kitchen and Artifact will close early to make up for the loss.
Sales show this may be a wise move for higher-end restaurants. According to the National Restaurant Association, 48 million Americans get takeout for the game, and 63 percent list chicken wings as their “must-have” snack, surpassing pizza and topped only by dips or spreads.
Wingstop is expecting sales to fluctuate by region. Ravens fans and those in the South Atlantic region are 27% more likely than the national average to order chicken wings than the national average, while fans in the Pacific are 34% less likely to order chicken wings, according to an NPD Group data study.
Both companies are encouraging fans to order ahead of time. Domino’s has on-time ordering online or through an app for mobile devices. Wingstop is accepting online pre-orders for the big game now through Wednesday, January 30 at midnight.
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