Posted by BurgerFuel

As we celebrate 25 years of BurgerFuel, we've been reflecting on the aspects of the brand that make it more than just great burgers.

To encapsulate our brand image in words, it is ‘Rebel Spirit’. It’s in our bones and at the core of everything we do. Instilled since BurgerFuels inception, it’s a legacy that’s been passed down through the decades and is embodied by the people who live it – from the misfits working at HQ, our motley crew of franchisees, to our awesome staff and loyal customers who resonate with the brand.

Pushing the boundaries, while cracking ourselves up along the way, has landed us in hot water over the years. We’ve made mistakes, poked the wrong bears and offended the PC mafia, often. But all in good humour and not (usually) with intention.

If it’s not funny, a bit of fun or a bit rebellious, it’s probably not worth doing. Here’s some highlights of shit we (rightly or wrongly) thought was worth doing at the time:


When it comes to our marketing, creativity is king. We’re always asking ourselves; can we make it funnier? Does it need some more randomly randomness? Is this actually funny? Is it too late to pull it? Shit.

In the earlier years, we rolled out many a promotion that, in this day and age, would see our PR team working overtime and us drowning in hate mail in our inbox. Since then, as the world became more politically correct and social media infiltrated societal norms, we’ve tried our best to tone it down and toe the line… ish.

We look back (sometimes in cringing disbelief) at a few rebel spirited marketing campaigns that were pretty out there, even in those days…

*Switches phone off

BurgerFuel marketing campaigns over the years: Some pure genius, others an affront to all that is decent and good. 

SUPPORTING SANTA'S HO'S SINCE WAY BACK: “Santa’s Ho’s are welcome at BurgerFuel this Xmas season. Don’t let the PC Police ruin Xmas – Don’t hassle the Ho!”. A Christmas Combo promotion that doesn’t make a whole heap of sense. Pretty sure the Hoff consented to us using his likeness this way though. 

100% FREE RANGE CHICKEN: BurgerFuel launches 100% Free Range chicken…with boobs. Oh dear. What PR nightmares are made of.

BURGERFUEL PUBLICLY LISTS: A campaign celebrating the successful launch on to the NZX. Shares and burgers could be bought in store. Oh, what a time to be alive.


A marketing tactic that has seen us consistently in trouble with the 5-0, traffic officials and the general public, is our Parking Ticket flyers. A pleasant surprise to some, or an offense of the highest order to others, sparking hate mail and near-restraining orders served from the passionately disgruntled recipient.

Our Parking Tickets are a voucher that offers the bearer free fries when they grab a burger. Seems harmless enough? Yet they look almost exactly like a real parking ticket.

We treasure the chats and interactions that have come from these friendly little surprises under your window wiper. We’ve received a cease and desist from Auckland Transport (AT), as our logo was a slight infringement itself, high fives and choice shout outs on social media from fans, a particularly salty complaint from the guy with the Ferrari who asked us to keep our “greasy burger hands” off his bonnet, to the parking wardens that made us go and remove every ticket from every window in that 500 space carpark, and watched.

One coming to your windscreen soon.


We know that some restaurant brands get a kick out of sports sponsorship. But we’re less about slapping a logo on a jersey and more about keeping athletes, almost athletes and wanna-be athletes fed and fuelled with burgers.

We’re all for backing fringe, minority or unconventional sports or just getting behind the under-dog. We have a history of giving a leg up to an eclectic range of legends, from the extreme, with our longstanding support of the Piha Boaties, to the fast, with our beloved top chick in motorsport, Kat Benson… to the best kinds of different, like a fighting robot called El Minion who recently won the 2019 Stupid Robot Fighting League Championship.

In the mid 2000’s, BurgerFuel was one of the earlier brands to get behind combat sport, specifically ‘Cage Fighting’. With a lack of media coverage and a common public perception as a brutal blood sport at that time, we dug the rebel spirit in it and built a lasting relationship with MMA fighter Josh Randall. We sponsored him in chicken. That’s 5 kilos of frozen chicken breast a week, as he prepared for a fight (which he subsequently won). A little chicken can go a long way.


Urban legend has it, there is a secret menu at BurgerFuel. Only a handful of longstanding, devoted customers know about said menu and protect that knowledge with their lives, never divulging a single ingredient until passing the menu on, via a whisper, on their deathbed.

OK, so not really. But even HQ staff engage in lengthy debates about what features on the 'official' secret menu. There are a few usual suspects, like the Studnut Stilton and Pontiac Pickle, both burgers on the OG menu from the early days. But the two secret menu items that are more widely known about, and with a notorious rebel spirited reputation, is the Noah’s Ark and Greedy Bastard. These are the kind of burgers in the ‘more is more’ section. Two monstrous burgers of epic proportions and not for the faint hearted - only big appetites need apply. If you want to know more, you’ll have to find a store that’s in the know.

If we told you the rest, we’d have to kill you.


Our creative ninja, Kelly, has worked on the BurgerFuel artwork for 9 years and loves to hide Easter eggs throughout the burger special poster art. We don’t feel this needs too much explanation, but a few examples below.

Have a go at playing ‘Where’s Willy’ when we launch our next burger special. 


“You know what this bunch of burger freaks and geeks needs? Hardcore strength & conditioning fitness training, like the kind for actual athletes!” said no one ever.

Well, someone thought it was a good idea and felt that the staff at BurgerFuel HQ needed an extreme offset to the partying and indulgent burger habits all HQ staff inevitably develop during their employment.

We did away with a couple of carparks, chucked in some soft flooring and a few dumbbells and, as random irony would have it, The BurgerFuel Athletic Department was born. A basement gym where HQ staff and Friends of the Fuel come to willingly get smashed, work out our sins and repent.

Group sessions aren’t for the faint hearted and if you like to train to upbeat pop songs, it might not be for you. With Trap goth, emo and gangsta rap blaring from the sound system and trainer Josh’s unique approach to training, it’s definitely an experience like no other. No ‘Mums, Bums and Tums’ here, these workouts combine science and physiology and simply go hand in hand with the regular consumption of high energy, wholesome burgers.