Chipotle Institutes Local Produce Program


photo: Chipotle

If you’re visiting a destination where you can’t seem to find a sustainable bite, you might be in luck if there’s a Chipotle around the corner. Chipotle, which has in the past taken steps towards being a more ecologically responsible mega chain, has recently increased its local produce program. As you crunch into your massive vegetarian burrito, take solace in the fact that Chipotle has increased an already sizable local produce program by 10 percent.Chipotle Mexican Grill is giving customers a taste of the local bounty by purchasing at least 35 percent of at least one bulk produce item in all of its restaurants from local farmers and producers. This makes Chipotle the only national chain taking such steps toward buying locally. Under its local produce program, Chipotle expects to have more than 25 local farms in its network that will supply some of the lettuce, green bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, red onions and/or oregano served at the chain's 860-plus restaurants nationwide, according to the company.

Warren already wrote that Chipotle was the first national restaurant chain to serve free-range pork, obtained from Niman Ranch. “These animals are not confined in stressful ‘factories.’ They live outdoors or in deeply bedded pens, so they are free to run, roam, root and socialize. And last year Chipotle Mexican Grill opened a partially wind-powered restaurant in Gurnee, Illinois. The six-kilowatt wind turbine is capable of supplying up to 10 percent of the facility's electricity demand.

More on Eating Locally:
Earthtalk: Why Eat Locally?
Getting Ready for Earth Day: Eat Local Food
Eating Locally: Backyard Chickens

Tags: Farmers Markets | Food Miles