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Becky: Hello Everyone! Welcome back to EnglishClass101.com. This is Culture Class, Season 3, Lesson 22 - The Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture. I’m Becky.
Eric: And I’m Eric. In this lesson, we'll look at 5 of the largest rivalries in the food and agriculture industry.
Becky: It might surprise you who made our list!
Eric: So let’s get to it!
Becky: Number 5 in our Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture is Domino's vs. Pizza Hut.
Eric: Like all of our food duels, this one is about taste. Which do you prefer?
Becky: And that’s where Domino’s and Pizza Hut have the biggest clash. Each of the two companies has performed “studies” showing that their pizza is preferred by more Americans.
Eric: When you research this rivalry on the internet, you’ll find articles from individuals telling you that Domino’s is better. You’ll also find articles from individuals telling you that Pizza Hut is better.
Becky: Just like the difference between Coke and Pepsi, it all comes down to taste. If the pizza that Pizza Hut makes tastes better to you, then buy at Pizza Hut.
Eric: There is one real difference between the two. Pizza Hut is almost always more expensive than Domino’s. That reason alone is enough for many people to choose Domino’s.
Becky: But it isn’t just pizza flavor that these two pizza giants duel over. They both have extensive “side dishes” like chicken wings, bread sticks, cheese sticks, soft drinks, and desserts.
Eric: They’re also very competitive in their advertising. I remember watching a movie on TV one night where there were so many pizza commercials, I can’t remember any other commercials. But all the pizza ads were either Pizza Hut or Domino’s.
Becky: Luckily for these two chains, both are household names. Which is part of the reason the competition is so fierce.
Eric: That’s right. The name of the restaurant is very important. Which brings us to our next topic.
Becky: Number 4 of our Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture is Dunkin' Donuts vs. Starbucks.
Eric: Now, it might seem like these two companies are in different areas. After all, Dunkin’ Donuts sells donuts and Starbucks sells coffee. However, they both sell typical American breakfast and snack foods, and that’s where they compete. Dunkin’ Donuts also sells a lot of coffee. You have to have something to dunk your donut in, right?
Becky: That’s right. Dunkin Donuts is also nearly twenty years older than Starbucks, but Starbucks is the largest coffee chain in the world. Starbucks did this through aggressive marketing and by having a neutral name.
Eric: That’s right. Even though most Americans drink coffee in the morning, not all of them feel comfortable about going to a place called Dunkin’ Donuts.
Becky: That’s right. To some people, Dunkin’ Donuts sounds childish. I read an article once where a person complained about exactly that. She actually preferred going to Dunkin’ Donuts but refused to meet anyone there because she felt embarrassed inviting her co-workers.
Eric: Not that Starbucks is an elegant word, but, to a native English speaker, Dunkin’ Donuts just sounds less...professional.
Becky: And this is just one of the ways these two companies compete. They also compete in every flavor and every coffee mix they make.
Eric: It’s pretty intense. Who’s next on our list?
Becky: Number 3 of our Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture is McDonald's vs. Burger King.
Eric: This is a good match. These two are both multi-billion dollar companies, but McDonald’s has a yearly revenue of $22.7 billion and Burger King only has $2.5 billion. McDonald's is the clear front-runner in this race.
Becky: But Burger King has a few tricks. Their recipe for burgers and fries is just different enough to appeal to many people. I don’t like hamburgers much, so to me they’re all just burgers, but I know people who refuse to eat at McDonalds because they don’t like the flavor.
Eric: But their real trick is customization. Now it isn’t like Subway, where you can actually build your own sandwich, but you can order a Whopper - which is Burger King’s flagship hamburger - and they’ll let you choose which condiments are on it and how much you want for free.
Becky: They used to even cut the burgers for you.
Eric: This is different from McDonald’s because the hamburgers there are specific, and if you want more condiments you have to add them yourself.
Becky: Now, for me, I don’t see much of a difference here, but many people do. Enough people in fact that Burger King used the “Have it your way” slogan all through the 1970s and 1980s, and then brought it back in 2005.
Eric: But that’s just how competitive the food industry is. One extra pickle, one packet of ketchup, or 10 more seconds on the grill can make the difference between a billion dollar company and a bankrupt company.
Becky: Speaking of things being very competitive, that brings us to our next duel.
Eric: That’s right! Number 2 of our Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture is Miller Lite vs. Bud Light.
Becky: These aren’t companies, they’re actual products. The one company, Miller, was the first to successfully mass-produce a light beer, and for many years, it dominated the market.
Eric: Then Budweiser developed their own light beer, called Bud Light, and started an aggressive ad campaign in the 1980s. By the year 2000, Bud Light was the bestselling light beer in the USA.
Becky: Since then, the companies have fought for the number 1 position, with both on top at different times.
Eric: You can see their ads during almost every American football game, music concert, and even during TV movies.
Becky: You also see other beverage commercials alongside theirs, which brings us to our number one duel!
Eric: That’s right! Number 1 of our Top 5 Biggest Duels in Food and Agriculture is Coca-Cola vs. Pepsi.
Becky: These two companies aren’t just giants, they are titans. This is probably the most talked about brand war in the history of the Food and Agriculture industry.
Eric: Probably the best part is that they’ve been in a rivalry for nearly 100 years. Both were created about the same time and both are multi-billion dollar companies.
Becky: Technically, Coca-Cola is the winner because it controls over 40% of all beverages sold in the USA. However, several of the submarkets are controlled by Pepsi.
Eric: For example, Mountain Dew is owned by Pepsi and it controls over 80% of the citrus drink market. However, it doesn’t end there.
Becky: Oh no. I have friends that actually can get into arguments about which is better, Pepsi or Coke. It’s something that some people really seem to care about.
Eric: And Pepsi and Coca-Cola certainly care about it. While researching this rivalry, I learned that Coca-Cola and Pepsi even put their products on a space shuttle mission to determine which one would fare better in a zero-gravity environment.
Becky: Wow. Trying to be the soda of the future?
Eric: Exactly! Apparently neither beverage fared very well, because I couldn’t find anything about how the “study” went (laughs). Well, that’s all for this lesson.
Becky: Thanks for listening, and we’ll see you next time!
Eric: See you!