Burgers and pizza is seen as American food. But does it go well with Americanification worldwide? In the Vietnamese city in Ho Chi Minh City the American fast food seems to have issues getting the accept it needs. It seems as if the local fast food is getting more and more popular.
American fast food chains, despite being hugely popular initially, seem to have failed to win over Vietnam, owing to tough competition from local food options and an inability to adapt to local taste buds. Vietnamese just don’t allow burgers to influence their lifes.
McDonald’s opened its first restaurant in Vietnam in February 2014
In February 2014, when McDonald’s opened its first outlet in Ho Chi Minh City, hundreds of people had waited in line for over an hour to taste the hamburgers made famous by Hollywood movies, regarding Canindia.
The future of the franchise, brought to Vietnam by Henry Nguyen — son-in-law of then-Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung — had seemed promising and several more outlets had opened up in the following months in different parts of Ho Chi Minh City.
There was a proposal to set up another hundred outlets spread over a decade, but because of Vietnamese different taste for food. McDonald’s is struggling in the country.
Only 15 restaurants in the country in 2017! Needed to rethink it’s strategy in Vietnam
According to Kantar market research group’s head Ashish Kanchan, the shrinking popularity of fast food chains like McDonald’s owes to their failure to fuse local flavors in their food, something they have been able to do successfully in countries such as Thailand. Most important is to see what the market that you enter likes or not.
Not only McDonald’s face the same issue. Burger King, another US-based fast food outlet, which entered the Vietnamese market three years ago, too finds itself in a similar predicament and has been forced of late to shut down six of its outlets, according to the website Vietnamnet.
Another reason for the declining popularity of American fast food in the country, Kanchan pointed out, is that Vietnamese people are healthy eaters and hence calorie-laden fast food is not often a popular choice. This is a tendency across the Asian countries in the same area.
“I don’t like this type of food because it is not fresh, it is fried food which is not good for health,” said Ngoc Chau, 35, who still prefers local food despite having lived abroad many years.
Moreover, Vietnam also offers a wide array of sumptuous street food, which is far cheaper than international fast food chains and more suited to the local palate. The BAO Vietnamese streetfood is also rising across the globe. Even here in Oslo, Norway there are Vietnamese opening new fastfood restaurants from their home country too. Is Vietnamese streetfood the next big thing after the Chinese food restaurants dominance for so long?
Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) fast food chain is doing great in Vietnam still after 20 years in the country
The burger fast food giants might have issues in Vietnam. However! The Vietnamese have not turned away from all kinds of American fast food. Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), which entered the country 20 years ago, continues to be popular, Kanchan said. They have also been way better at giving the Vietnamese local own designed menus which both McDonald’s and Burger King haven’t think about at all. Vietnam as many of the countries in this region loves to eat rice instead of potatoes. When I visited the Indonesian Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants, I got chicken clubs with rice dishes that just tasted amazingly good. I didn’t expect this, but I already knew how much different KFC is in United Kingdom and Poland for example. They have been very good at providing local types of menus and food. Like salads, extras and other things that makes people feel more at home than in a state of United States of America.