By Alex Long
Since January, select Dunkin’ Donuts locations in the Northeast have been making some significant changes. These select restaurants have removed the “Donuts” from their name and also removed some items from the menu as a sort of trial run for the changes to come. The changes to the name have been reportedly made in an effort to separate the chain from their reputation of being a place for just coffee and donuts.
In the past year, the chain has already cut almost half of its donut flavors from stores nationwide. They continue to cut the menu by eliminating certain sandwiches and smoothies, a change that was implemented at the beginning of March at stores nationwide. The items cut include: Turkey Bacon Cheddar Sandwich, Ham and Cheddar Sandwich, Tuna Salad Sandwich, Chicken Salad Sandwich, Big N’ Toasted Breakfast Sandwich, Angus Steak and Egg Breakfast Sandwich, Strawberry Banana and Tropical Mango Smoothies, Peach, Caramel, and Mocha unsweetened flavor shots, some other bagel, muffin, and cream cheese selections, and flatbread. According to the chain, the removal of these slow moving items was done in an effort to make the chain more streamlined across locations, make service more efficient, and to ease the workload of its employees.
While the chain points out that these items were not very popular, there are some people out there who will definitely be feeling the loss. Senior Allyson Kim pointed out, “The changes don't affect me, but there are some people out there who are losing their favorite foods which could mean a major drop in sales.” Flatbreads are also one of the more healthier options on the menu, so the removal of flatbreads from the menu makes it a lot harder to find food to fit dietary restrictions.
All of the past changes to the menu and to the name make it clear that the chain would like to move away from their reputation of having just donuts and coffee and start competing with the likes of McDonald’s. Junior Delaney Smith agrees, “Well yeah, their donuts are not good so I see why they don't want to compete with places like Krispy Kreme.” However, the decision to cut lunch items makes it unclear where they are headed in the future as they got rid of the items that were supposed to seperate them from their reputation of just being a place to get coffee. Overall, there are many mixed feelings about the decision to rebrand and change the menu, but only time will tell if it the rebranding will be successful.