Chipotle May Give Away More Free Food In 2016 To Rebuild Good Will With Customers, But The Details Remain Largely Unknown
It's been a rough few months for Chipotle lovers, but there's finally good news on the horizon. Chipotle may give away more free food in the coming year, presumably to subtly remind customers why we were all so obsessed with the great Bestower of Burritos. Unfortunately for Chipotle, news stories in the past few months have included fewer listicles enumerating the chain's perfection and more coverage of E. coli outbreaks, with an investigation by the Centers for Disease Control still ongoing. (It should be noted that Chipotle is cooperating with the investigation, and the CDC has not advised consumers to avoid Chipotle restaurants.) But this? This is definitely a bright spot. Because free burritos.
Chipotle recently announced that every single restaurant will shut down on Feb. 8 for a meeting about the company's efforts to combat the outbreaks. In an effort to win back customers, however, the chain has reportedly doubled the amount of free food individual stores can give out in 2016, according to CNBC. Although the chain has always made a practice of giving away food — in the past, customers could receive a free "boorito" for wearing a costume on Halloween — Chipotle CFO Jack Hartung recently told CNBC that the practice slowly "drifted to such a low-grade level that it was kind of non-existent." Bustle reached out to Chipotle for comment, but had received no response by press time; we will update if and when we hear back.
The bottom line? Your chances of free Chipotle might have just doubled. Best day ever, or best day ever?
The details are still largely unknown; we don't know what kind of promotions the stores will use to give away food, nor do we know when the exact date when they will go into effect. However, the increase in free food is merely the start of a planned marketing campaign designed to draw customers back in after the E. coli scare. "I have confidence that we're going to recover from this," co-CEO Steve Ellis said, according to CNBC.
If they're right, it won't be long before we're all back to being this kid. It might be time to start budgeting for guacamole again.
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