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Boycott Papa John’s, Pizza Hut? Is Kentucky Really The Pizza Capital?

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Nov/03/2008
Papa John's

One interesting "fact" that has come out of the debacle involving Kentucky's decision to seize 141 online gambling domains, we have discovered that the Kentucky - of all places - is the pizza capital of the world....well, sort of.

When BoycottKentucky.com emerged on the Internet, they asked that we boycott those products and companies with roots in the Kentucky commonwealth.

Two of those companies we come to find out are Pizza Hut and Papa John's. 

Pizza Hut is the world's largest pizza restaurant whose restaurants total approximately 34,000 restaurants, delivery-carry out units, and kiosks in 100 countries.  Papa John's Pizza is the third largest take-out and delivery pizza restaurant chain in the United States, behind Pizza Hut and Domino's Pizza.  It has 2,100 Papa John's stores in the U.S., over 200 in the UK, 30 in China, over 15 in Canada.

Pizza Hut is based outside of Dallas, Texas but is part of the Yum! Brand subsidiary which includes Kentucky Fried Chicken and Taco Bell.  Yum! Brands operates from Louisville, Kentucky as does Papa John's, which started out in the state of Indiana.

BoycottKentucky.com explains the rationale behind the boycott:

BoycottKentucky.com is committed to direct action and is dedicated to mobilizing fair-minded citizens against Governor Steve Beshear's attempted seizure of 141 domain names in September. The names at issue are associated with a variety of well-known gaming websites. This action - which so far, has been upheld in court, is a serious blow to civil liberties, internet freedom and common sense.

Beshear claims that online gambling websites have become "leeches to the community" and are cutting into his own state's economy, primarily the horse racing business. 

Papa John's is no stranger to boycott.  Last May,  when a Washington, D.C. franchise distributed t-shirts making fun of Cleveland Cavaliers star player LeBron James at a playoff game against the Washington Wizards, there was an immediate outcry for Cleveland residents to stay clear of Papa John's.  An apology from the Papa John's national headquarters on May 5 and a well publicized pizza promotion helped to simmer tempers.

To date, neither Papa John's nor Pizza Hut would comment on the boycott initiative.   

BoycottKentucky.com is run by Precision Marketing Solutions, Inc. - a NY-based marketing and ecommerce company operating websites in a wide variety of markets.   They also want people to avoid Kentucky bourbon as part of the boycott campaign.

A forfeiture hearing is scheduled for November 17. 

Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher

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