Krystal Square Off

Fast food icon Krystal has announced that it will host the first ever World Hamburger Eating Championship. Billed as the Krystal Square Off® and expected to draw the world’s top competitive eaters, the 11-event hamburger-eating circuit will run throughout the Southeast this Fall, culminating with a final world championship event in Chattanooga, Tenn., on Nov. 13, 2004.

Sanctioned by the International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE), the Krystal Square Off® World Hamburger Eating Championship will be the first time the IFOCE has crowned a hamburger-eating champion of the world.

The championship series will feature “The Krystal,” the famous 2.5 inch square Krystal hamburger that has been the restaurant chain’s signature offering since its founding in 1932. While people generally eat Krystal burgers in multiples of three and four, Krystal Square Off® organizers anticipate top gustatory athletes to consume upwards of around 40 to 50 Krystal burgers within the allotted 8-minute eating period.

The Krystal Square Off® World Hamburger Eating Championship will award a $5,000 first prize and is poised to instantly become a major event on the international competitive eating circuit. The winners of each of eleven qualifying events will earn a seat at the final championship table in Chattanooga, where The Krystal Company is headquartered. In addition to the $5,000 first prize, Krystal will offer $1,000 to the second place finisher and $500 to the third place eater.

“It’s about time for a World Hamburger Eating Championship, and Krystal is thrilled to partner with the IFOCE to present it,” said Brad Wahl, Manager of Marketing and Promotions at The Krystal Company. “For the past 70 plus years, friends and families have been devouring Krystals by the sackful, and now we will officially put the challenge out there for all Krystal lovers, hamburger connoisseurs and the sport of competitive eating. While many people expect the big guns of the sport to dominate this competition, we believe local residents with lifelong training regimens of eating multiples of Krystals will be right in the thick of it.”

“The appeal and iconic stature of the Krystal burger, especially throughout the South, is likely to boost participation significantly, and we expect this to be a highly competitive series,” said Richard Shea, President of the IFOCE. “Because of the Krystal’s big taste and alluring aroma, it is possible that some eaters may be distracted from the task at hand, slowing to enjoy the burgers at the expense of their position in the contest.”

This is an IFOCE-sanctioned championship series and the IFOCE will handle registration. Information on how to participate in the Krystal Square Off® World Hamburger Eating Championship, including qualifying locations, dates and rules, can be found at

Founded in 1932, The Krystal Company is the oldest quick service restaurant chain in the Southeast and the second oldest in the United States. Famous for its small, square burgers, which have become synonymous with Southern fast food, Krystal has emerged as one of the most successful quick service restaurants in the industry. With 24-hour operations, Krystal restaurants offer their customers one-of-a-kind menu items for breakfast, lunch, dinner, late night or snack options. The Chattanooga-based Krystal chain currently has more than 425 restaurants in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and