Lotte Mart’s cheapest fried chickens stir political controversy

Leo Lewis

Aus Bus Pix Fried Chicken

Lotte Mart undercut the market for fried chicken by 60 per cent. Picture by Adam Ward Source: The Australian

FIVE thousand South Korean won, or $4.40, is the price of the most politically charged bucket of fried chicken to hit South Korea.

In four days, the chicken has generated impatient three-hour queues, street protests, a regulatory investigation, national soul-searching on the ethics of competition and condemnation from the office of the President.

Few food products have left so much turbulence in their greasy wake, or revealed so clearly the insecurities that haunt Asia’s fourth-largest economy.

The poultry-centric controversy began late last week when Lotte Mart, one of South Korea’s biggest retailers, began selling its fried chicken at a level that undercut the prevailing market price by more than 60 per cent.

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