Yum! Brands, the parent company of KFC, is starting to see signs of recovery after sales in China plummeted in late 2012. The company reported that sales in China during May saw a year-over-year drop of 19 percent, which is a significant improvement from the 29 percent decline reported for April.
The latest figures were helped by a 12 percent growth at Pizza Hut, also one of Yum! Brands' companies. That growth offset a 25 percent decline for KFC sales.
Yum! Brands was hit hard in December 2012 after a Chinese television report said some of the company's suppliers were giving chicken unapproved levels of antibiotics. Since then, the company eliminated more than 1,000 producers from its supplier network and launched a campaign to assure the public that its food is safe.
The company also took a hit in recent months, after fears of avian influenza swept China.
Yum! Brands expects the sales at Chinese restaurants to continue to improve over the course of the year, and stated that past scares centered around avian influenza were short-lived.