I love Kentucky Fried Chicken. KFC is one of the tastiest things in the world. But it’s tasteless to deploy the coronavirus as a marketing stunt.

There is no reason the coronavirus should have caused it to drop its famous finger lickin’ good catchphrase, but it knew it would spark debate and get people talking about KFC, and in that respect it’s a marketing job as juicy as a delicious drumstick.

But it’s an ill-judged move for KFC to exploit the coronavirus to get people eating more fried chicken.

‘We felt we had to do this’ its marketing team has gushed to anyone who would listen.

No doubt the marketing team will be lickin’ their lips at the resulting publicity, it’s a shame none of them wondered whether it was too soon to appropriate the health risks caused by the pandemic to shift more popcorn chicken.

Maybe you think I’m being cynical, in which case you need to hear about this bridge… and I’m definitely being humourless because I’m not even ready to crack a smile about this situation, perhaps not ever, because even now it still feels we’re all coming out the other side of a nasty dose of salmonella that’s ready to repeat on us.

The insistence this is a temporary move and the pixellation of the catchphrase on the buckets adds to the insincerity of the ploy. It’s a marketing stunt as naked as a plucked chicken, designed to create publicity for the brand using a global pandemic that’s caused misery for millions around the world to do it.

KFC has a talent for irreverent advertising that dovetails nicely with the wholesome vibe given off by Colonel Sanders. But this is an opportunistic move at a hugely inopportune time for so many. KFC just used the coronavirus to plug its fried chicken. And, for the first time ever, it’s left an unpleasant taste in my mouth.