Industry News | October 24, 2013

KFC Honors the Colonel with Charity Auction

Historian Barry Bernson and KFC employee Trevor Park, right, looking at a rare, 50-year-old Colonel Sanders weathervane which once stood atop a KFC restaurant. Photo credit: Business Wire
Bookmark/Share this post with:
Email this story Email this story
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

Colonel Harland Sanders' commitment to helping others was legendary for the KFC brand. That’s why KFC started its Recipe for Hope program, which raises awareness, volunteerism, and funds for hunger relief. Through November 10, customers have an opportunity to donate $1 at KFC restaurants across the country to support the World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger. Last year alone, WFP reached more than 97 million people in 80 countries with food assistance.

This year, to raise additional funds and further celebrate the Colonel’s commitment to philanthropy, KFC will auction a number of historical artifacts that Colonel Sanders collected throughout his storied career. These items, which until recently were locked away in a secure underground storage facility in Louisville, Kentucky, are up for auction through October 28 and will benefit Feeding America, the nation's leading hunger relief organization, and the World Food Programme.

“Colonel Sanders' secret recipe to a life well-lived was grounded in giving back and feeding those in need—a principle that lives on today at KFC through our Recipe for Hope program,” says John Cywinski, president of KFC U.S. “It seems only fitting that we continue to honor the Colonel’s commitment to fighting hunger by making it possible for his fans to own some of his most prized memorabilia. In doing so, they’ll be further contributing to that same cause.”

According to the World Food Programme, one in eight people go to bed hungry each night, and just $1 can feed four children for a day. In the U.S., there are about 49 million people who struggle with hunger, including 16 million children.

KFC has teamed up with Dallas-based Heritage Auctions, which notably sold one of Colonel Sanders’ famous white suits last June for $21,510, to help curate and auction items from the Colonel Sanders Collection. Items up for auction include a Senate proclamation given on the Colonel’s 90th birthday, the Colonel’s personal Boy Scout plaque, a key to the city of St. Louis, an invitation from President Jimmy Carter for the Colonel and Mrs. Sanders to attend a 1979 White House reception, and a rare Colonel Sanders weathervane from the 1960s.

Potential bidders can visit the Heritage Auctions website to bid on their favorite items and watch the action live.

Since 2007, KFC has supported Yum! Brands’ nationally recognized annual campaign supporting the United Nations’ World Food Programme and other hunger relief agencies. In October 2012, the U.S. State Department awarded David Novak, CEO of Yum! Brands Inc., its top annual humanitarian award for the company’s successes. To date, KFC and Yum! Brands’ World Hunger Relief campaign have raised $150 million for the World Food Programme and other hunger relief organizations. Through these efforts, nearly 600 million meals have been provided around the world. Since 2007, KFC U.S. restaurants alone have raised nearly $9 million to fight hunger.