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It Took Less Than Two Months for Dunkin Donuts to Mass-Produce the Cronut

Lily Kuo and Herman Wong

In case you needed more proof of the quickening pace of globalization, look no further than the “cronut.” Within two months, the hybrid pastry created in New York City as a cross between a croissant and a donut has spread around the world.

Bakers and pastry shops are offering imitations and adaptations of the cronut, launched in May by the Dominique Ansel Bakery in downtown Manhattan, in Japan, the Philippines, Australia, Spain, China and the UK, among others. (Because Ansel has filed a trademark for the term “cronut,” imitators use other names. For example, one bakery in London calls its version the “dosant.”)

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In South Korea, an adaptation of Ansel’s recipe is now being offered by a global donut and coffee chain, rather than a local baker or domestic pastry chain. A Dunkin Donuts spokesman told Quartz that the chain introduced the “New York Pie Donut” this past weekend. Dunkin Donuts also launched a “Donut Croissant” in Manila a few weeks ago but has no plans to introduce them in the US right now. In South Korea, the pastries are being sold in the high-end Seoul neighborhood of Gangnam, as well as Jamsil and Myungdong.

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Dunkin Donuts’ operations in South Korea are part of its overall global expansion to beat out other mammoth coffee chains like Starbucks. Dunkin Donuts has just over 3,000 stores outside the US. In South Korea, the company has built an image of being an exotic, somewhat high-brow Western donut shop. The chain has created a localized menu (example: the kimchi donut) and smartphone apps for the country’s digitally wired populace.

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As is the case with New York cronuts, locals in Seoul are enduring long lines to get their hands on South Korea’s version. (A Dunkin Donuts representative for South Korea was not available for comment.) According to one comment on the Facebook page for Dunkin Donuts South Korea, customers were limited to two of the pastries per person: