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Jack in the Box

~ National Chain, the Americas ~
FAST FOOD – Medium

One of the top fast-food restaurants in America, Jack in the Box was founded in February of 1951 by Robert O. Peterson in San Diego, California. Today they have over 2,200 locations mainly on the West Coast of the United States. They can also be found in the central states with popularity in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, the Carolinas, and Ohio.

They also operated the Qdoba Mexican Grill until 2017 when Apollo Global Management took over Qdoba. They offer a variety of selections from burgers, chicken tenders, tacos, and egg rolls. They took on a circus-like decor around a starry-eyed clown in the 1940s. It took on its current iconography in 1951 wrapped around the then-popular drive-thru intercom technology. A Giant clown projected from the roof and a smaller clown head sat atop the intercom saying “Pull forward Jack will speak to you.”

Peterson created a holding company called Foodmaker Inc managing the popular chain. Foodmaker was sold to Ralston Purina Company in 1968 and it became the most prolific growth television commercial-based fast-food giant in the 1970s. They hit some struggles afterward trying to expand to the East Coast, and in the 80’s made a marketing strategy “The Food is better at the Box” competing with its competitors, not for the kids of McDonald’s but the affluent yuppie customers with a higher quality more upscale menu. They flashed their ads with the Jumbo Jack, Seasoned Curly Fries, salads, and diverse menu. Ralston Purina sold Foodmaker in 1985 to management and became a publicly-traded company with over $655 million in sales by 1987. There is an array of food types and selections, a quick fast food fix to the hungry palate. But it is fast food still nonetheless and carries the unhealthy characteristics of junk food.

Rating: 3 stars out of 5

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