Chick-fil-A Plans to Open U.K. Sites in 2025

Chick-fil-a in uk

Fast-Food Chain’s $1 Billion Global Expansion Strategy Includes a Commitment to Source Chicken and Eggs Locally

Chick-fil-A has big plans for 2025: The brand will expand into the United Kingdom, its first permanent venture beyond North America, according to USA Today. Chick-fil-A has said it aims to launch five locally owned and operated restaurants in the U.K. during the first two years and then broaden its U.K. footprint, the USA Today report indicated.  

Earlier this year, Chick-fil-A had announced plans for a $1 billion push that would open units in Asia and the European continent by 2026 and five more restaurants by the end of this decade. The company currently has more than 2,800 locations across the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada.

Local Impact of Chick-fil-A Presence

The chicken that will be used in preparing the brand’s iconic fried chicken sandwiches will be sourced from the U.K. and Ireland. Eggs used in the company’s recipes also will be produced locally. Chick-fil-A has said that each of its new units will create about 80 to 120 new jobs.

Joanna Symonds, who runs Chick-fil-A’s operations in the United Kingdom, said in a news release “From our earliest days, we’ve worked to positively influence the places we call home, and this will be the same for our stores in the U.K.” Anita Costello, Chick-Fil-A’s chief international officer at Chick-fil-A Inc., stated in the news release that the company is “excited our restaurants will bring new jobs and opportunities throughout the U.K. … Our unique local owner-operator model provides one-of-a-kind access to entrepreneurial opportunities.” 

Past LGBTQ Opposition

In an expansion experiment a few years ago, Chick-fil-A experienced a bumpy ride. The company debuted a temporary site inside a Reading, England, shopping mall in 2019. Area LGBTQ+ rights activists quickly began protests. The mall that had leased space to Chick-fil-A wouldn’t allow the brand to renew after its ”six-month pilot period,” USA Today noted, quoting the BBC. 

Why the icy reception? Chick-fil-A has donated to organizations such as the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the U.S. Salvation Army, both of which have indicated opposition to LGBTQ rights.

Later in 2019, Chick-fil-A altered its approach to charitable donations. The company said in a statement it will “deepen its giving to a smaller number of organizations” by focusing on education, homelessness and hunger. “Additionally, the Foundation will no longer make multiyear commitments and will reassess its philanthropic partnerships annually to allow maximum,“ the company said in the statement. “These partners could include faith-based and non-faith-based charities.”

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Mary Vinnedge is an award-winning writer who has served as editor in chief, managing editor and senior editor at national and regional publications, including SUCCESS and Design NJ magazines. A seasoned journalist, Mary covers the latest franchising news in her role as staff writer for FranchiseWire.
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