The legacy of KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken) begins with its founder, Harland Sanders, who was famously known as Colonel Sanders.
The title of “Colonel” was honorary and not associated with his military service; rather, it was given to him by the Governor of Kentucky in recognition of his contribution to the state’s cuisine and culinary reputation.
In 1890, Harland Sanders was born in Henryville, Indiana, United States. He grew up in a poor household and had to take care of his younger siblings after his father’s death. Sanders’ mother taught him how to cook, and he quickly developed a passion for preparing meals.
In 1930, at the age of 40, Sanders opened a small restaurant in Corbin, Kentucky, which he named Sanders Court & Café. The restaurant gained popularity for its mouthwatering fried chicken, which was cooked in a pressure fryer, sealing in the flavors and creating a crispy exterior. Sanders’ secret blend of 11 herbs and spices, which he called “Original Recipe,” became a signature feature of his chicken.
As the popularity of his fried chicken grew, Sanders was given the honorary title of “Colonel” in 1935 by Kentucky Governor Ruby Laffoon. This title was a testament to his culinary achievements and allowed him to use the name “Colonel” as part of his brand.
Sanders faced several challenges over the years, including the loss of his restaurant due to a fire and the onset of World War II, which led to a shortage of gas and rationing of food. Despite these setbacks, his reputation as a talented chef and his unique chicken recipe kept him determined.
In 1952, Sanders began to franchise his restaurant concept, allowing others to use his secret recipe and sell his fried chicken. Under the franchise model, he travelled across the United States, signing deals with various restaurant owners who wanted to serve his beloved chicken. By the time he sold the company in 1964, there were more than 600 KFC franchise locations across the country.
Colonel Sanders continued to play an integral role in KFC’s branding and marketing efforts even after selling the company. He became the company’s official spokesperson, appearing in countless advertisements donning his iconic white suit, black string tie, and signature white goatee.
Harland Sanders, the Kentucky Colonel and the man behind KFC, passed away in 1980, but his legacy lives on.
KFC remains one of the most popular fast-food chains globally, thanks to Sanders’ original recipe, which has been enjoyed by millions of people worldwide.
Credit to; aikedoo