This paper presents how travel and industry in general and restaurant industry in particular gets affected by the current societal and political issues. It explores its findings and relates how Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) as one of the fast-casual dining restaurant gets affected by the current issues including global issues such as obesity. It points out the challenges in running restaurants offering low cost menu items while facing problems related to wages increment, employee health care coverage, high employee turnover, low retention rate, offering quality food at low cost while maintaining “Food with Integrity” commitment. Finally, with all these changes likely to happen, family owned restaurant gets mostly affected and might lead to run out of business due to wages increment, labor shortages including skilled manpower, inability to provide health care coverage. Companies like CMG can operate but the only way to stay on the business is to increase price to the menu items as most restaurants operate with low profit margin on their sales items which ultimately affects purchasing power of its most customers thereby loosing bulk of their potential customers. The only other way to keep its customers is to compromise on their commitment and start serving low quality food at low price. In doing this, they will lose their integrity in restaurant business, leading to the global health issue of obesity. One company cannot address all these alarming issues but at least can start positive move in creating healthy society. The company can only dream of its longevity and expansion if it can help creating a healthy community serving healthy food.
Changes in the political and societal circumstances are likely not to leave restaurant industry without causing any harm. Political, economic, societal decisions will affect the entire travel and hospitality industry in general and restaurant industry in particular. Regulations imposed in near and far arenas will affect ranging from restaurant’s menu to payroll, customer satisfaction and profit. In order to meet the standards and run the business on the way owners and franchises wanted to, it is very crucial for them to monitor local and State representative and the way they are leaning towards. Restaurants will be highly affected due to the burning issues such as wages increment, obesity, cheap menu items, employee benefits especially health care coverage, employee shortages, high employee turnover, low retention rate.
The uncertainty of economic downturn prevailing among the U.S consumers leads to the negative atmosphere as customers get feared of not spending money for restaurant food by less dining out and preparing food at home instead. Customers will minimize on their spending by reducing their family spending budget, so they will start shopping at the grocery store and prepare their own food, which saves them from unnecessary restaurant food tax including direct and indirect costs added to the restaurant food. The only thing customers loose is their time they spend on grocery shopping and preparing food. However, with all these online shopping services offered by the big grocery stores like Wal-Mart and King Soopers, customers are likely to save expenses gas and mileage and the driving time. If in the future, even if the rumor of the recession or economy down turn will come out, there will be a huge impact on the sales of the restaurant and Chipotle is no exception to it, no matter how good they are in terms of overall services and quality of food served.
Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) is already an established as the company which people can trust in terms of serving quality food and their commitment maintaining integrity. However, with the rising cost from the suppliers, it is challenging for them fulfil their commitment without