Americans will eat 1.25 billion chicken wings during Sunday’s Super Bowl game, according to the National Chicken Council’s 2015 Wing Report. Served hot, mild, spicy, tangy or plain, that’s enough wings laid end to end to cross the nation 28 times between Seattle and New England, the teams contending for the championship. It’s also enough to put 572 wings on every seat in all 32 NFL stadiums, the report said.
The council estimates that 25 percent of the wings come from retail grocery stories, and that sales spike dramatically during the week leading up to the Super Bowl.
The other 75 percent are purchased from food service outlets, including restaurants, bars and wing and pizza places.
Minneapolis-based Buffalo Wild Wings Inc. has more than 1,000 stores, and other chains including Pizza Hut and Little Caesar’s serve wings. The number of chicken-wing franchises grew 7 percent during the past five years through 2013, according to FRANdata, a Virginia-based franchise researcher.
This year’s wings will be more expensive, since the number of chickens slaughtered last year fell slightly.
The average wholesale price of whole wings is approximately $1.68 per pound this week, up from $1.35 at the same time last year, according to Georgia processors, whose marketing numbers are considered a benchmark for the nation.