Subway says its sales have gone down since the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. aired a segment late in February called “The Chicken Challenge.” The segment told viewers that Subway’s “chicken” was actually only about 50 percent chicken, while the chicken of A&W, McDonald’s, Tim Hortons, and Wendy’s all contained between 85-90 percent chicken DNA.
So, what made up the other 50 percent of Subway's chicken? CBC said it was soy.
Now, Subway is firing back. The sandwich giant is suing the CBC, according to the New York Post.
Subway is claiming $210 million in damages. The company claims the story was “defamatory and absolutely false.”
“Despite our efforts to share the facts with the CBC about the high quality of our chicken and to express our strong objections to their inaccurate claims, they have not issued a retraction, as we requested,” Subway said in a statement Thursday. “Serving high-quality food to our customers is our top priority, and we are committed to seeing that this factually incorrect report is corrected.”
The DNA tests cited by CBC Marketplace were conducted by Trent University in Ontario. One Subway franchisee, Bob Grewal, told the Post that researchers told Subway officials “the CBC twisted all the facts.”
“The fact is these guys sideswiped us,” Grewal said. “This was purposely done to drive ratings.”
Gewal’s firm, Grewal Foods, oversees more than 2,000 of the chain’s nearly 30,000 locations.
“I am very scared this could hurt momentum,” he said. “Since this story broke, sales have gone downhill.”
Expect this case, if it goes to court, to reveal to us exactly how much chicken is in Subway’s chicken.