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    Wednesday, May 12, 2004

    A Low Carb World II: Krispy Kreme, once our family's favorite doughnut maker, says the low carb craze is hurting its business:

    Krispy Kreme is not getting fat on sales these days, blaming the low-carb diets for eating into its profits.

    "For several months, there has been increasing consumer interest in low-carbohydrate diets, which has adversely impacted several flour-based food categories, including bread, cereal and pasta," according to Krispy Kreme. "This trend had little discernible effect on our business last year. However, recent market data suggests consumer interest in reduced carbohydrate consumption has heightened significantly following the beginning of the year and has accelerated in the last two to three months."

    This is a pretty lame excuse. Krispy Kreme has no one to blame but itself for its dismal performance. They've been shutting down their shops and moving their doughnut sales to gas stations and Target stores, where they're sold in prepackaged boxes, like Hostess or Dolly Madison doughnuts. Who wants that?

    The Krispy Kreme in our town used to be very popular. People would pick up doughnuts there and take them to work as treats for their co-workers. Drug reps used them as doctor-treats. The store even had a drive-thu window, which appeared to be as busy as McDonald's drive-thru. They were hopping on Sunday mornings after church.

    But beginning last year a series of corporate decisions doomed the place. First, they cut down on the variety of their doughnuts. (No more vanilla frosting! It wasn't an "official Krispy Kreme recipe.") Then they shut the drive-through window. Then they shut down the store and sold the pre-packaged doughnuts in the gas station across the street. Well, no one goes to the gas station to get doughnuts for their co-workers, and no one goes there after church, either. They go to a new doughnut shop that opened when Krispy Kreme closed. (The owner knew an opportunity when she saw it.)

    But, of course, it's easier for Krispy Kreme executives to blame diet fads for their failures than to accept the blame for their bad decisions.

    posted by Sydney on 5/12/2004 08:01:00 PM 0 comments


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