Chipotle will air its first Super Bowl ad touting the farmers who supply its food

Key Points
  • Chipotle will air its first Super Bowl ad this year to highlight the practices of its supply chain.
  • The hefty price tag of the airtime and the difficulty in striking the right tone in advertising has led many big brands to sit out the game this year.
  • But Chipotle is one of the rare winners of the coronavirus pandemic, thanks to its strong digital sales.

In this article

A still from Chipotle's "Can a burrito change the world?" ad.
Source: Chipotle

Chipotle Mexican Grill will run its first-ever Super Bowl ad this year to highlight the farming practices of its suppliers.

Big brands like Coca-Cola and Budweiser are sitting out the game this year, freeing up airtime for newcomers like Chipotle. A 30-second commercial during the football game will set companies back about $5.5 million this year, slightly less than 2020′s rate of roughly $5.6 million.

Chipotle is one of the rare winners of the coronavirus pandemic from the restaurant industry. The burrito chain has seen its digital sales more than triple in its last two quarters, and its stock has soared 72% in the last year, raising its market value to $41.9 billion.

However, the pandemic also presents new difficulties to advertisers, who will have to worry about striking the right tone when the football game's commercials typically skew toward comedic and star studded.

Chipotle's ad aims to keep customers coming back to its restaurants by focusing on its "food with integrity" pledge and how it sources its ingredients. In the commercial, a boy asks if a burrito can change the world, from emitting less carbon to making farmers happier, while showing images of peppers and tomatoes being grown, picked and transported.

In a release announcing the news, Chipotle said that it believes that the pandemic has shifted consumers toward a "community-focused society," making them more aware of the impact of where and how they spend their dollars.

"We want to use this massive platform to help shift attention toward creating positive change for the challenges our food system faces and educate consumers on how they can make a difference," Chief Marketing Officer Chris Brandt said in a statement.

On Super Bowl Sunday, Chipotle will donate a dollar from every order to the National Young Farmers Coalition, an advocacy group for young farmers, and customers who order from the chain's website or app won't have to pay a delivery fee.

For years, the company and its foundation have contributed millions of dollars to support U.S. farmers. Chipotle donates 5% of the profits from the Tractor Beverages drinks sold at its locations to causes that benefit farmers.

Chipotle CEO says the company won't require workers to get the vaccine