Krispy Kreme CEO Defends Free Donut Offer for People Who Get COVID-19 Vaccine

Tara C. Mahadevan
·2 min read

Image via Getty/SAUL LOEB

Krispy Kreme’s viral promotion, which involves free donuts for anyone who gets a COVID-19 vaccine shot, was received with a little pushback.

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Despite the good intentions, some people pointed out that offering free donuts doesn’t mix with the fact that obesity is a high-risk category for the virus. Now, Krispy Kreme CEO Mike Tattersfield is defending the company’s initiative. “We’re a sweet treat company, [and] if folks don’t want to visit a donut shop, they don’t have to,” he said on Yahoo Finance Live.

Tattersfield added that if “folks that want to get a vaccine, if they decide to combine a Krispy Kreme pickup [for] a doughnut, they can. That’s how we look at it…. generosity.”

The company’s latest campaign follows a similar one from last March, where it offered a free dozen of its original glazed donut to all healthcare workers. Tattersfield explained that the giveaway became very popular, and that “people are always looking for a little sweet treat break.”

And for those questioning how the campaign will affect Krispy Kreme’s bottom line. Tattersfield contended that the initiatives have brought more customers into stores, with sales rising during the pandemic. “Last year, we gave away 30 million doughnuts. We didn’t come into the year thinking that we’re going to do 30 million doughnuts from giveaway,” he said. “We’ve always done fundraising and had some type of give back to the community. The majority of the United States is a company owned system, so we pick up the tab.”

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