Today on This Week In Pizza: Bitcoins for Pizza; Meat-Free for Lent; and Eau de Pizza
Digital Currency Makes Inroads in Pizza Market
Can a Bitcoin buy a bite of pizza? Yes, if you like your pies made by the major national chains.
Proponents of the Bitcoin-a type of digital currency-have been trying to make it into the mainstream for years. Now they're getting a little help from Pizza Hut and Domino's. The two pizza giants still won't accept Bitcoins directly, but they do allow customers to order pies through a third-party website called PizzaForCoins.com. The website accepts the bitcoins in payment, then sends the customer's order to the store; however, PizzaforCoins.com actually buys gift cards from the pizzeria to complete the sale.
For some, Lent means no meat on Fridays and, for others, no meat, period, for 40 days. So how does that affect pizza sales? According to a report by CBS New York, it's not a problem for pizzerias that offer vegetarian pies.
Frank Sabatino of Dunwoodie Pizzeria and Restaurant in Yonkers, New York, told CBS that meat-free slices with veggies such as eggplant generate sales during the Lenten season. Some pizzerias promote more white pies on their menus (such as Ridgewood, New Jersey-based A Mano's Tartufo pizza, pictured) or add seafood to the mix, while something as simple as a grilled cheese sandwich can also enjoy booming sales … at least until Easter. (Photo credit: Neal Clipper)
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Eau de Pizza Hut Spreads the Love
Nothing says "I love you" like a bottle of pizza-scented perfume. At least that was the idea behind Pizza Hut's recent Eau de Perfume promotion, with several dozen lucky social media users in the U.S. winning limited-edition bottles around Valentine's Day.
Starting Feb. 11, Pizza Hut invited customers to post tweets on Twitter using the hashtag #LastMinuteLovers in order to receive a Last Minute Lovers package, which included a bottle of Eau de Pizza Hut and a $20 gift card. One package was given away every hour over a three-day period for a total of 72 winners. The perfume was first introduced briefly last year in Canada, generating so much publicity that Pizza Hut knew a nifty promotional gimmick when they smelled it.
A top executive at Australia's Domino's Pizza said in a recent CNBC interview that mobile devices and other digital platforms represent the future of pizza.
Don Meij, CEO of the down-under Domino's, said more than half of all pizza orders in Australia and New Zealand are placed through mobile devices. He predicted that mobile sales will account for about three-quarters of all sales in the next two or three years. "Mobile is so important," he added, "and you get things you can't normally get, like pizza tracking."