Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) is a leading fast food restaurant in United States of America. The restaurant ranks second after McDonalds in terms of sales. KFC specialises in fried chicken and boasts of over 18,875 outlets spread in 118 countries (Williams, 2012).
Definition of CSR
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is an initiative taken by organisations to extend the social and environmental mandate to the community. CSR entails the efforts that go beyond the normal operations; thus, engagement in activities that promote the social welfare of the community. According to Branco and Rodrigues (2006), CSR is a philosophy that emphasises in upholding the social and environmental interests of the society.
Driving forces of CSR
The first driving force is the rise in ethical consumerism. In the modern society, consumers have become more aware of the environmental and social implications. As a result, purchasing decisions are made based on the ethical and environmental concern. Social and environmental awareness education is another force. The concern is triggered by impacts of economic activities on the environment. With the adverse climatic changes, and increased awareness of the sustainable living, businesses are being held accountable for their social and environmental impacts (Sharma & Kiran, 2013). Increased competition also acts as a CSR driving force, CSR has become a tool for gaining competitive edge for companies. Companies use CSR as a measure to build reputation and strengthen their brand names.
The company’s CSR
In KFS, CSR is an obligation towards the society. KFS has a long-term corporate social responsibility that entails animal welfare. The CSR is implemented through the Animal Welfare Advisory Council. It includes advocating for humane handling of animals, training, and education of the animal breeders.
The reasons of applying CSR method(s)
KFS applies the animal welfare CSR in order to build a reputable brand image. KFS has the responsibility to ensure that the animals they buy from suppliers are treated in the proper manner as stipulated by animal rights organisations (Williams, 2012). The CSR is applied to ensure that the suppliers do not mistreat animals, and they meet the stipulated legal requirements.
Ethical issues in CSR
CSR is designed to promote the vision of the company and build a strong brand image that aligns with stakeholders and shareholders demands. The ethical issues that arise in the CSR entail the balancing of the animal welfare issues and the need for the company to stay profitable (Branco & Rodrigues, 2006). There is a dilemma that the CSR takes a lot of concentration, which may divert the business from its core mandate. Transparency is another ethical issue. CSR should stick to the intended purpose and should integrate communities in their CSR activities in order to promote awareness.
When is CSR wrong?
CSR is wrong if it does not add value to the community and if it is not within the moral and legal confines. According to Sharma and Kiran (2013), CSR can be wrong if it is not carried in a transparent manner. The lack of transparency may lead to misunderstandings of the motivating factor; thus, the community may be against the CSR.
Branco, M., & Rodrigues, L. (2006). Corporate social responsibility and resource-based perspectives. Journal of Business Ethics, 69 (2), 111–132. Web.
Sharma, A., & Kiran, R. (2013). Corporate social responsibility: driving forces and challenges. International Journal of Business Research and Development, 2 (1), 18‐27. Web.
William, G. (2012). In Kentucky, Fried Chicken History. Lexington, Ky.: University Press of Kentucky. Web.