People feel good about eating at Chipotle. Not only do most think the food is tasty, but they feel like they’re eating healthy. And it’s been a win for the company. The fast-casual chain’s revenue has risen about 11 percent from $2.73 billion in 2012 to $3.04 billion so far this year, reports The Huffington Post.
Though they offer other options, their bowl meal are beyond popular. A decade ago, Chipotle first introduced its burrito bowl (a choice of rice, beans, meat, salsa, and other fixings). According to Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold, Chipotle now sells more bowls than burritos.
Sales of so-called Mexican bowls at fast-casual eateries jumped 14 percent over the past two years, according to data from food research firm Technomic. The number of chains offering “Asian bowls” with such ingredients as noodles, chicken, rice and vegetables increased eight percent over the same period, found Technomic. And, Chipotle’s Asian-themed spinoff, ShopHouse, exclusively sells Asian bowls.
“The number of fast food restaurants offering a ‘bowl meal’ grew by 5.6 percent between 2010 and 2014, according to research from Dataessential, a Chicago-based firm that tracks food industry trends,” reports HuffPo.
Earlier this year, Taco Bell debuts a Cantina Power Menu, which offers a selection of steak, chicken and veggie bowls. And KFC has featured its “famous bowl” line — a mix of mashed potatoes, bite-sized crispy chicken pieces, gravy and cheese — since 2006. The number of fast-food restaurants offering a “bowl meal” increases by 5.6 percent between 2010 and 2014, according to research from Dataessential, which tracks food industry trends. The bowls have become popular because they feed into the rise of dining gluten-free and eating protein over carbs. They are also convenient–easy to eat at your desk at work.
But some don’t buy into “healthy” bowls. According to Marlene Schwartz, the director at Yale’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, its can actually be unhealthy. One way to treat obesity and eating disorders is to “sit at a table without the television on and actually eat your food with a knife and fork,” Schwartz says. When you’re multi-tasking while eating your meal, you could be overeating.
While fast-casual chains seem to be doing great business, fast-food giants aren’t faring so well. McDonald’s profits dropped a whopping 30 percent according to the latest numbers. “McDonald’s net income fell to $1.07 billion, or $1.09 per share, in the quarter ended Sept. 30 from $1.52 billion, or $1.52 per share, a year earlier. Total revenue fell 4.6 percent to $6.99 billion,” reports The Huffington Post.
The world’s largest restaurant chain has been struggling in the U.S., unable to compete with healthier options from such places as Chipotle.
Overseas McDonald’s is having bad luck. Europe, which is its biggest market, was damaged by issues in Russia and Germany. And sales in China, its fastest-growing market, dropped over a supplier scandal.
“McDonald’s third-quarter results reflect a significant decline versus a year ago … by all measures, our performance fell short of our expectations,” Chief Executive Don Thompson said in a statement.