Hartung added that while he is disappointed that Chipotle is not further along, they are encouraged in the customer research that they are seeing.
Chipotle reported a weak quarter on Tuesday; however management did note that sales trends started recovering in the second half of the quarter.
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"We are always going to err on the side of making sure our customers are safe. And we will do that again, even though it might hurt us financially, because we think over time that is what is going to regain the trust of our customers," Hartung said.
The CFO also noted that research showed that during the health scares, customers that visited less often did not go to a direct competitor. Instead, money was spent somewhere else. That provided management with confidence that customer loyalty will be more likely to be kept in the long run.
"We can have our cake and eat it, too. We can serve these great ingredients, we can do all the cooking in the restaurants and we can ensure for our customers that our food will be safe. And so, we think we are charting new territory here," Hartung said.