Pizza in China

The presence of pizza restaurant chains has contributed to a significant increase in pizza consumption in China.[1] This also had an effect of introducing cheese as a culinary ingredient and everyday food in China, which was relatively uncommon in Chinese cuisine prior to the emergence of pizza chains.[1][2] Pizza Hut opened its first store in China in 1990,[3][4] and several pizza restaurant chains exist in China today.

Pizza chains in ChinaEdit

A Pizza Hut restaurant in Happy Valley, Hong Kong. Some of the scooters in front of the store are used for pizza delivery.
Pizza by the slice at a sidewalk food shop in Hong Kong

Early historyEdit

Pizza Hut opened its first store in China in 1990, and Pizza Hut and Domino's Pizza both expanded in the Chinese market in the 2000s.[3][5][6][2] Prior to entering the market, Pizza Hut performed market analysis and research into consumer food preferences, tastes, and dining habits, whereas Domino's simply entered the market providing their standard fare.[5] With its planning and research, Pizza Hut was successful in its endeavors, opening over 1,300 stores in the country, whereas Domino's was rather unsuccessful, with under 40 stores in China in 2014.[5] At the time, Domino's provided the company's delivery guarantee of thirty minutes or less, but did not take into account many Chinese cities' heavy vehicle traffic and gridlock.[5] Domino's lack of success in the Chinese market has also been attributed to the chain's fare lacking appeal to Chinese consumers, not having sit-down restaurants (Domino's stores were take-out and delivery only), and the large size of the company's pizzas, which made them difficult for consumers to eat while walking or hanging out on the street.[5][7]

Prior to establishing restaurants in China, Pizza Hut management was told by experts that many Chinese consumers do not like cheese and may not be able to digest it.[8][a] The company's management was also informed that tomato is not a culinary ingredient in China.[8] Per these factors, Pizza Hut was warned that Chinese consumers would not eat pizza.[8] In response to this, Pizza Hut modified their pizza recipes, using less tomato sauce and cheese and including indigenous ingredients that were agreeable to Chinese consumers, such as tuna, crab sticks, soy sauce, chicken and corn.[8] The company also created new pizzas for the Chinese market, such as the Homemade Sweet and Creamy, which resembles apple turnovers, and the Thousand Island dressing pizza, which lacked tomato sauce.[8] As of 2014, Pizza Hut had over 1,300 stores in China, with a particularly strong presence in Shanghai.[5][9]

Present DayEdit

Currently Yum Brands owned Pizza Hut has over 2,000 stores in China[10] and Domino's has over 200 with plans to open 1,000 by 2025 [11]

Other pizza chains in ChinaEdit

A Magritta Pizza restaurant in Haikou, China

Supermarket pizzaEdit

Pizza by the slice in the Carrefour supermarket deli section, Haikou, Hainan

A number of supermarkets sell pizza by the slice that is made in their deli section. It may be prepared using a salad dressing much like Miracle Whip rather than cheese. Toppings often include hot dog bits.

Independent chainsEdit

As well as international chains there are a growing number of strong independent players owned and run by both local and international entrepreneurs, such as Una's, Melrose and Homeslice.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "... cheese is not traditionally a part of the Chinese diet, with many Chinese being lactose-intolerant."[7]


  1. ^ a b French, P.; Crabbe, M. (2010). Fat China: How Expanding Waistlines are Changing a Nation. China in the 21st Century Series. Anthem Press. pp. 175–176. ISBN 978-0-85728-803-5. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  2. ^ a b Roberts, Adrienne (August 16, 2016). "Domino's Pizza delivers rapid growth with new markets, technologies". Crain's Detroit Business. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c Smith, A.F. (2012). Fast Food and Junk Food: An Encyclopedia of What We Love to Eat. Fast Food and Junk Food: An Encyclopedia of what We Love to Eat. ABC-CLIO. p. 121. ISBN 978-0-313-39393-8. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  4. ^ Edwards, William (June 1, 2011). "The Pros and Cons of Franchising in China". China Business Review. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Chan, S.; Zakkour, M. (2014). China's Super Consumers: What 1 Billion Customers Want and How to Sell it to Them. Wiley. pp. 96–97. ISBN 978-1-118-90590-6. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  6. ^ Campbell, G. (2016). Bubbles in Food 2: Novelty, Health and Luxury. American Associate of Cereal Chemists International. Elsevier Science. p. 422. ISBN 978-0-12-810459-0. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  7. ^ a b Sozzi, Brian (April 7, 2015). "Where Domino's Pizza Sees Its Next Huge Growth Market". The Street. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  8. ^ a b c d e Ahlstrom, D.; Bruton, G.D. (2009). International Management: Strategy and Culture in the Emerging World. Cengage Learning. p. 37. ISBN 978-0-324-40631-3. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  9. ^ Yu, F.L.T. (2012). Entrepreneurship and Taiwan's Economic Dynamics. Springer Science & Business Media. pp. 50–51. ISBN 978-3-642-28264-5. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  10. ^ Business, Analysis by Daniel Shane, CNN. "Robot waiters and snail pizza: What US fast food brands do to please Chinese diners". CNN. Retrieved 2019-11-01.
  11. ^ Pizza, Domino's. "Domino's Pizza® Celebrates the Opening of Its 10,000th International Store". Retrieved 2019-11-01.
  12. ^ Xiao, Weihua (November–December 2005). "Mr. pizza: the emerging Chinese pizza market". PMQ Pizza Magazine. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  13. ^ "Chinese fast food chain gets first institutional investment". Asian Venture Capital Journal. June 29, 2011. Retrieved July 16, 2017. (subscription required)
  14. ^ "Food scares strip McDonald's, KFC of treat status in China". Reuters. August 5, 2015. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  15. ^ "Papa John's Sells Slice of Its China Business - Caixin Global". Retrieved 2019-11-01.
  16. ^ "Peppes brings upscale pizza to China". China Daily US Edition. April 15, 2008. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  17. ^ "海南至尊美食加盟新概念有限公司". 海南至尊美食加盟新概念有限公司 (in Chinese). July 12, 2017. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  18. ^ "Papa John's buys Pizza Corner". The Hindu. November 25, 2014. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  19. ^ Anderson, Elizabeth (October 27, 2015). "Pizza Express looks for a bigger slice of China as it puts Asian expansion on the menu". The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 July 2017.
  20. ^ McCreary, Matthew; Grossmann, Rick; Farrow, Boyd; Humphries, Matthew; Grossmann, Rick (December 17, 2015). "Pizza Factory Inc". Entrepreneur. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  21. ^ "Yellow Cab to open 15 stores in China". Rappler. January 11, 2016. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
  22. ^ "JOE'S PIZZA | WELCOME". Retrieved 2018-04-18.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit