McDonalds-style battle looms over KFC at Byron

Byron Bay protest against McDonald's in 1997. Photo Gary Chigwidden
Byron Bay protest against McDonald's in 1997. Photo Gary Chigwidden archive

WITH the debate about the possibility of a Kentucky Fried Chicken in Byron Bay the question has to be asked: What makes KFC different to franchises already in the town?

Byron Bay already has a Baskin-Robbins and a Subway. So what makes KFC a step too far?

Byron mayor Simon Richardson said yesterday there has been a "collective, innate feeling that (KFC) doesn't fit here in Byron Bay."

As for what differentiates KFC from other franchises in the town, Cr Richardson said along with the concerns of obesity and quality of food, the idea of a KFC rips further and further away from the Byron Bay "vibe".

"I think (KFC is) far more identifiable as an American multinational," he said.

Of the question that a KFC might bring more jobs, he said, "The pool's only so deep. Yes, it might provide some jobs, but it may also take that away from other businesses."

Former Byron mayor now State MP Jan Barham said she believes an attempt to bring a KFC to Byron Bay might spark the kind of campaign the town saw in the '90s, when McDonald's tried to set up shop there.

Ms Barham was part of that successful campaign to stop the golden arches coming to town.

It was an iconic thing, Byron didn't have franchises then. The idea of McDonald's was a huge concern because it would open the path to other franchises, she said.

"They can get them (franchises like KFC) anywhere else.

"The expectation of Byron has always been that people want something different, not something they can get anywhere else."

"Local businesses can't afford to be in the main street anymore and people come here, look around (see the franchises) and think 'Hey, it's just like every other place'."

"It can be very negative for its tourism if somewhere doesn't live up to its expectation."

Ms Barham believes people need to think about what Byron means to the community and visitors and how they want to retain that atmosphere.

 

 

Should KFC be allowed to have a store at Byron Bay?

This poll ended on 05 December 2012.

Current Results

Yes

59%

No

40%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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