Chipotle’s goal to be the “clean label” fast food chain has finally been fully achieved.
The burrito-making chain announced this morning that they have developed new tortilla formulations that eliminate all additives and preservatives from its tortillas. Their entire menu now only contains 51 different ingredients following this impressive change.
Chipotle has been working to eliminate additives and preservatives from its tortillas for the past two years, and has finally been able to achieve that goal. Flour tortillas now contain just five ingredients (flour, water, canola oil, salt, and yeast) while the corn tortillas used for chips have just two (corn masa and water).
The shift in tortilla recipes has allowed the company to finally be fully clean-label and free from ingredients like added colors, flavors, and preservatives. Apart from lemon juice and lime juice (which the company says are used for flavor over preservation), no other such ingredients now exist in Chipotle’s food.
Chipotle’s press release claims that the shift to this level of transparency in food is needed since similar companies that claim their ingredients to be natural are still not clean label.
“Chipotle’s accomplishment comes at a time when other fast food brands are scrambling to clean up their ingredient statements as consumers turn away from processed foods and foods with added colors, flavors, preservatives and other industrial additives. But nearly every fast food chain has chosen the easier path of simply switching from artificial flavors and colors to ‘natural’ versions of additives that serve the same purpose. Some fast food companies have gone so far as to designate the preservatives they use as ‘natural’ even though nearly all preservatives identified in FDA rules are known as ‘chemical preservatives.'”
It definitely makes Chipotle stand out from the rest of the crowd and increases trust in the brand, as Chipotle is definitely more clean-label than any other giant fast food chain.
Between this major announcement, a recovery in the company’s sales, and a restoration of Chipotle’s brand image following the major food poisoning controversies of last year, things are definitely looking up for the build-your-own burrito franchise.