Restaurant News

Papa John's CEO Warns Obamacare Will Mean Higher Pizza Prices -- Okay, Slightly Higher Pizza Prices -- Okay, Barely Noticeable Higher Pizza Prices -- But Still, GRRR!

Strong words of warning from John Schnatter, founder and CEO of Papa John's to those who love themselves a slice of chain-store pizza.

Last week, Schnatter (a Mitt Romney backer) said during a phone call with shareholders that if Obamacare is passed, the new healthcare law (set to go into effect in 2014) will result in higher costs for Papa John's that the company plans to pass on to its customers.

So just what kind of price hike are we talking about?

"Our best estimate is that the Obamacare will cost 11 to 14 cents per pizza, or 15 to 20 cents per order from a corporate basis," Schnatter said, according to Politico.

Oh, yes, people of Papa's. You will suffer. You will suffer like no pizza chain pizza eaters have ever suffered before.

That's right. The "Papa" of Papa John's says his company (the third-largest pizza takeout and delivery chain in the country) is threatening to rain a shit-storm of higher pizza prices (more like spare change) if Obamacare is passed, because it will have to provide its employees with affordable health insurance.

"If Obamacare is, in fact, not repealed, we will find tactics to shallow out any Obamacare costs and core strategies to pass that cost onto consumers in order to protect our shareholders' best interests," Schnatter vowed, according to Politico.

If this is true, will anyone even notice the price hike? And is Papa John's alone in its concern over Obamacare?

According to Businessweek, McDonald's is planning on handling the extra costs, but the Wall Street Journal reports that Burger King, Quiznos, and Dunkin' Donuts have expressed concern the new healthcare law may hurt business.

If Obamacare is hurting anyone, it may be the CEOs of the companies themselves. The progressive tax laws that will help pay for the new healthcare law mean company heads like Schnatter, who Forbes reported made $2,745,219 last year, may be squeezed for more of their personal earnings.

(via: Politico, Huffington Post, Gawker)

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld