With its New Ad, Chipotle Wants to Make You Forget Its Troubles and Fall in Love Again

The embattled restaurant chain put out a charming advertisement amidst legal trouble for a top exec.

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By Nina Zipkin

Chipotle has had a rough go of it lately.

The fast casual Mexican chain certainly has its loyal fans, but it had to overhaul its health and safety practices after it weathered an E. coli outbreak that affected 60 people in more than 10 states earlier this year. And just this week, the executive leading the turnaround, chief marketing and development officer Mark Crumpacker, was arrested and charged for cocaine possession.

Related: Chipotle Faces Food Poisoning Lawsuits in California and Minnesota

Arguably, it makes sense that the company would want to return to simpler times, or at least a time when the CDC and NYPD didn't loom large over its day-to-day activities and its worst problem was a pork shortage.

To that end, yesterday, the company put out an animated short film called "A Love Story."

The advertisement follows two lifelong competitors (she runs a lemonade stand, he sells orange juice) as they grow their empires, until one day their overzealously automated business practices end up quite literally turning on them, inspiring them to set aside their citrusy differences, join forces and go back to basics.

Related: Chipotle Just Put an Official Price on Its Most Famous Secret Menu Item

Some were charmed by the Pixar-esque storytelling (and surprisingly chilling Backstreet Boys cover), but others remain steadfast in their conviction to not eat there again if they can help it.

Does the ad sway your opinion about Chipotle? Let us know.

Nina Zipkin

Entrepreneur Staff

Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture.

Nina Zipkin is a staff writer at Entrepreneur.com. She frequently covers leadership, media, tech, startups, culture and workplace trends.

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