Chipotle is making headlines once again, but this time, it has nothing to do with the food that is so good it makes me weep tears of burrito happiness. Instead, the "fast casual" food chain is taking a step to be even more convenient than it already is. According to CNBC, Chipotle is officially adding drive-thrus to new locations — but with one sweet twist: customers order ahead of time using Chipotle's mobile app, they are given the pick-up time, and they can then visit the drive-thru only to get their order.
That's right. You don't even have to get out of your car anymore. Hungry, lazy people everywhere, rejoice!
Before you place your order and hop in the car, know only five of these locations exist thus far, says CNBC: two in Ohio, and one in Texas, Tennessee, and Massachusetts. Another location in Virginia should be opening by the end of the year. It may not sound like much yet, but all new locations moving forward will be considered for this revolutionary kind of drive-thru. In a world where we can order just about anything online and have it delivered to our doorsteps, offering such a level of convenience is probably a wise move on Chipotle's part.
Curt Garner, chief digital and information officer at Chipotle, said to CNBC, "As we are looking at our real estate pipeline, part of the criteria that has been introduced is to understand how many of those sites might lend themselves to that experience, even if we don't open them immediately with [the mobile lane] enabled."
This isn't the first step Chipotle has taken toward making ordering easier. As Bustle previously reported, from April 30 to May 6, Chipotle teamed up with DoorDash to bring you free delivery, which was basically better than Christmas morning. Sprinkled in before and after that have been all kinds of discounts and freebies, like a BOGO deal for both Earth Day and Teacher Appreciation Day. And anyone who's ever lived within a five-mile radius of a Chipotle knows there are deals to be had if you walk into a Chipotle in costume on Halloween.
Aside from making it easier than ever to get yourself a custom-made burrito, which remains the miracle of all miracles, Chipotle has managed to pull off some other pretty incredible things. They believe in preparing food without any added preservatives, flavors, or colors, according to their site. Their ingredients come from farms — not factories — a choice that costs them more money; but they're dedicated to sourcing only from responsible suppliers who rely on eco-friendly and sustainable practices. In 2013, Chipotle was all the talk when it became the first national chain to voluntarily admit there were GMOs in their food. By 2015, they had switched entirely to GMO-free food.
Here's why it all matters. Factory farming could destroy the planet — no exaggeration. Animal agriculture and the way we eat animals have a very real, very serious consequence. Of course, asking everyone to cut out meat is unreasonable; and honestly? It might not even be totally necessary. What is necessary, without a shadow of a doubt, is producing and consuming meat in a more responsible way.
And that's one area Chipotle is leading the way. So go on. Have another burrito. Pay extra for the guac. Get the side of chips. You deserve it. As you're chowing down, give yourself a pat on the back for picking your restaurant wisely. Keep your eyes peeled for the drive-thrus, too. Chipotle is changing the way we eat. It's the future! And the future means never having to get out of your car to eat your dreams.