It’s going to cost a little extra to fix this burrito.
That’s the message Chipotle Mexican Grill sent today in an announcement that its co-CEO, Monty Moran, was stepping down and vacating his seat on the company board. In his place, the chain’s founder and co-CEO, Steve Ells, would be taking full control of the restaurant chain.
For a year now, the once-irreproachable brand has been trying to recover from a December 2015 food safety crisis that sickened 60 people with E. coli across 14 states, hospitalizing 22. Since the food safety outbreak, Chipotle fell out of favor with consumers and struggled to convince people to walk back through its front doors.
“Given the ongoing challenges facing the company, the board felt strongly that it was best for Steve to resume leadership of the company going forward,” the company said.
In addition to shuffling its leadership, the company has also decided to refurbish its stated mission. The company was committed to changing “the way people think about and eat fast food,” but moving forward the mission will be to “ensure that better food, prepared from whole, unprocessed ingredients is accessible to everyone.”
The announcement to the change didn’t provide any nuanced reasoning for why they company is making the shift.
In the past, Chipotle has used its “changemaker” mission to create slickly produced animated videos excoriating the food industry for its mechanized industrialization of the food chain. Those were watched by millions of people. It is unclear how the recasting of its mission will impact how it attempts to reach consumers.
Ells will need all the help he can get for fixing the company.
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