- Chipotle has a new restaurant design that’s all-electric to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- Two pilot restaurants have opened, with a third on the way.
- The restaurant chain’s “responsible design” will include using renewable energy, all-electric cooking equipment, biodegradable service ware, and EV charging stations.
Chipotle Mexican Grill is joining the electrified movement too. The company recently launched an all-electric restaurant design that customers can visit in Gloucester, Virginia, and Jacksonville, Florida (with a third on the way in Castle Rock, Colorado). This new restaurant design pilot will help guide the new Chipotle sustainability campaign that includes reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030.
The new restaurant design looks to maximize energy efficiency where possible. It utilizes 100% renewable energy from wind power and solar, by purchasing certified renewable energy credits.
What the New Chipotle Will Feature
The “responsible design” in Chipotle’s sustainability program will include a variety of features:
- Rooftop solar panels (where they’re feasible)
- All-electric equipment and systems to replace gas-powered equipment
- Heat pumps for water heaters
- Improved exhaust hoods and a smaller electric cookline
- Energy management systems
- Biodegradable cutlery, straws, bowls, cups, and lids
- Cactus leather chairs
- Artwork made from recycled rice husks
- EV charging stations at select locations
Chipotle plans to leverage its new restaurant openings to scale the company’s overall impact. The company has established an aggressive development goal of eventually expanding to 7,000 locations in North America. It also aims to have more than 100 of its new locations in 2024 use all-electric equipment and at least some additional elements from its new design.
Chipotle will continually innovate and iterate on the new design as it receives operational feedback and insights.
More From the Chipotle Sustainability Campaign
Chipotle says it wants to reduce direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions company-wide by 50% by 2030. To accomplish this, Chipotle is instituting various additional initiatives, such as:
- Standardizing the installation of energy management systems at every restaurant. These systems will manage the HVAC, refrigeration temperatures, and other equipment.
- Exploring and adopting broader use of low-carbon fuels as well as renewable resources in logistics.
- Investing in projects that would reduce emissions in beef and dairy production.
- Developing strategies to help supply chain partners with adopting more regenerative agriculture practices.
- Offering more vegetarian and vegan menu items.
- Increasing the amount of local produce purchased in 2023 to a planned total of at least 36.4 million pounds. (Here, “local” means that it’s sourced from within 350 miles of a distribution center.)
Chipotle also released its 2022 Sustainability Report to share the company’s overall impact, progress, and goals.
“With our aggressive development goal in North America, we hold ourselves accountable to reduce the environmental impact of our restaurants,” said Laurie Schalow, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer at Chipotle. “We are aiming to incorporate some elements of our responsible restaurant design into many of our new restaurant openings going forward.”
SOURCE | IMAGES: CHIPOTLE
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