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Chipotle’s closed for lunch. But here’s a Free Burrito.


Chipotle hosts Food Safety meeting. Chipotle shuts down for lunch. Chipotle offers free burritos. Be like Chipotle.

“If we messed up your lunch plans today, follow the steps and we’ll hook you up,” the company said on its website. Anyone who wanted free food could text the word “raincheck” to 888-222 before 6 pm on Monday. And Voila. 

The Why and the How:

Chipotle workers around the country could monitor the meeting through Periscope and Twitter. The purpose was to prevent a return of the E. coli outbreak that poisoned more than 500 customers last year. Chipotle’s sales have slumped after not one but two E. coli outbreaks. In November, they temporarily closed 43 restaurants in Washington and Oregon after 22 cases were linked to its eateries. Those locations have since reopened.

The burrito chain closed all its U.S. restaurants for part of the day so its employees could attend a company-wide meeting to discuss food safety changes and allow staff to ask questions- all 50,000 of its employees. Chipotle live-tweeted the event to its 730,000 Twitter followers under the hash tag #ChipotleAllTeam.

All restaurants reopened at 3 p.m Monday in their respective time zones.

At least one company jumped to capitalize on Chipotle’s brief shutdown. Food delivery service, Seamless, sent an email to customers announcing that it could suggest other Mexican food choices “when certain restaurants are closed (you know who).” Hah. Now that’s business.