John Li Shares Wendy's Vision for Our Food
I’ve always been passionate about food and the role it plays in delivering happiness. In fact, it’s this philosophy on food and good eating that led me to Wendy’s. Here at Wendy’s, I’m surrounded by kindred spirits who are just as food-focused as me. The values and beliefs I’ve always lived by in my career are the perfect match to founder Dave Thomas’ – which makes Wendy’s the right choice for me to honor his promise to provide great food with quality as our recipe. Wendy’s refuses to cut corners – and, fun fact from a new insider: yes, that’s really why our burgers are square.
While this approach to food has always been status quo at Wendy’s, when I came on board as the new Vice President of Culinary Innovation, I was inspired to lead our team to put a stake in the ground, define what good food means to us – and share that with our fans.
I feel so fortunate that, although I led similar strategic efforts in my past leadership roles at Kraft/Nabisco and Bloomin’ Brands, I now have access to cross-functional expertise like I’ve never had before. With critical thinking from key leaders like our two directors, Shelly Thobe and Marshall Scarborough, and key thought partners within Liliana Esposito’s and Carl Loredo’s teams, we challenged our previous thinking, and over three months of debate and discussions, landed on our current food vision.
We know you care a whole lot about the food you eat – not only about how it tastes (which is obviously important), but where it comes from and how it’s prepared and maybe even what inspires it. So, consider this your insider look at how Wendy’s decides what makes the cut when it comes to our menu, and how we continue to innovate and look toward the future of Wendy’s food.
We make real food for real people—food we’re proud to enjoy with our own family and friends.
We start with high-quality ingredients and prepare them fresh to order.
Our chefs combine familiar flavors with fresh twists to make food that’s “gotta-have-it-now” delicious.
DOESN’T COST A FORTUNE:
We build in value where it matters, so you can count on food you love at a price you feel good about.
We track and apply food trends at the right time in the right way.
Fast Food Done Right is at the core of everything Wendy’s stands for, rooted in Dave Thomas and his unwavering commitment to good food.
Guided by our food vision, we’ll continue to push the envelope to deliver the best possible menu items – while continuing to build on the great progress we’ve already made! We’ll continue to work closely with QSCC and Quality Assurance to purposefully source the best ingredients – like fresh, never frozen beef and seasonal strawberries – and continue to prove how Wendy’s is different from the rest.
We’ll use all our teams’ passion for food and expertise to set the bar high on craveable flavor that you can’t just have one bite of, like our delicious Made to Crave creations.
We’ll make sure, when we develop these mouth-watering recipes, that they resonate with our guests and avoid being niche and not broadly appealing. So, when the next food trend comes along, we’ll only pursue it if we know it’s going to stick around– like the passion for all things spicy (You know we know our way around ghost pepper!).
Last, but certainly not least, we want every guest to walk away from a Wendy’s experience with a full belly and a feeling that their hard-earned money was well spent. Stay tuned for much more to come from our culinary team!