Is It Too Late for Chipotle to Say Sorry?

Chipotle and I have broken up. I dumped it after it made hundreds of people sick with salmonella and norovirus and E. coli (you're such a slut, Chipotle), but now it's on its knees telling me that's it's changed. The Chipotle restaurants closed their doors for half the day and made every single employee sit through the longest Monday morning meeting known to humankind, and now it's saying it learned its lesson and it's ready for a relationship again. But will I take it back? I don't know, Chipotle. I really don't.


Here's the thing: I really love those burritos and tacos (let's drop the metaphor here before things get really inappropriate, yeah?). I like that no matter where I'm standing, I can have a burrito bowl in my loving arms in five minutes flat. Chipotle's guac is like God to me. And I like the new measures it's taking to keep things safe, including:

  • Shredding cheese and chopping cilantro, tomatoes, and lettuce at a central kitchen instead of in individual stores.
  • Macerating onions and veggies with lemon and lime juice to kill germs.
  • Randomly testing samples of vegetables and meat for diseases before they're sent out to individual locations.
  • Blanching vegetables before serving them.
  • Providing paid sick leave to employees so they don't go to work and contaminate the kitchen and food.

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But doesn't it sort of feel like empty gestures? (Except for the paid sick leave for hourly employees -- that's amazing. Do more of that, Chipotle.) But the rest sort of feels like stuff it should have been doing before, and it's only stepping up now that we've caught it in the act.

To complicate matters more, some of the chains I've been rebounding with are offering special "Chipotle really f-ed this up" deals, and let me tell you: They are tempting. Like, two Moe's burritos for the price of one? C'mon. That's amazing. 

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So now we're forced to ask: Are two Moe's burritos really as good as one Chipotle burrito, even if it might have E. coli in it? 

Search your own souls. Find out what's important to you. But I'll tell you my truth: I think it was an honest mistake. Chipotle and I have problems we need to work out, but I've decided to forgive it. Will you?


Image via Northfoto/Shutterstock

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