FILE - In this Aug. 24, 2010 file photo, patrons enjoy a meal at a Burger King in Springfield, Ill. The movement by U.S. food corporations toward more humane treatment of animals experienced a whopper of a shift Wednesday, April 25, 2012, when Burger King announced that all of its eggs and pork will come from cage-free chickens and pigs by 2017. The decision by the world's second-biggest fast-food restaurant raises the bar for other companies seeking to appeal to the rising consumer demand for more humanely produced fare.(AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

Cape Town - Burger King, the world’s second-largest fast-food chain, is coming to Cape Town.

Capetonains will be able to experience Burger King’s legendary Whopper hamburger some time next year, when the first outlet opens in the city, local partners announced on Thursday, setting up a new battleground in the war with rival McDonald’s.

“Now is the time to develop the brand in South Africa,” said Grand Parade Investments executive, Jose Cil, as he announced the decision to establish a branch in Cape Town.

Burger King started as Insta-Burger-King in 1953 and is famous for its Burger King Whopper.

The Whopper consists of a 113g beef patty, on a bed of lettuce, tomato, pickles, sliced onion and is dressed in mayonnaise between a sesame seed bun. The Cape Town branch will be the first Burger King in Africa.

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille said the new venture would also bring about job creation and that the decision was a “welcomed vote of confidence” in the city by the private sector and would boost efforts to tackle poverty in the city.

“The City of Cape Town is proud to become the home of the first Burger King outlet in South Africa. I am grateful that the Burger King Corporation has chosen Cape Town as the base for their flagship project,” De Lille said.

Grand Parade Investments financial planner and analyst Alisha Sadler-Almeida said Cape Town was chosen because Grand Parade Investments was based in the city.

“We have aggressive growth plans and plan to achieve the significant number of restaurants in half the time that it has taken McDonalds to establish itself in South Africa, and we anticipate that we will create approximately 5 000 direct and indirect jobs relating to the Burger King business,” she said.

De Lille said the decision would also “open business opportunities for local suppliers. It helps our economy grow. It boosts our on-going efforts to tackle poverty in the city”.

“We strongly believe the joint venture is uniquely positioned to succeed in South Africa’s lucrative quick service restaurant market,” Cil said.

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Cape Argus