Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc.’s (NYSE: CMG) continued push to support local farming continues with a digital farmers market.
The Newport Beach-based chain is fronting the hosting costs for farmers to sell on a Shopify Inc.-enabled marketplace it’s calling the Chipotle Virtual Farmers’ Market. It’s also assisting with the design of each virtual storefront.
The market, at launch, features four businesses: Niman Ranch, a Chipotle beef supplier; Petaluma Creamery and Jack Meister Cheese, providers of Monterey Jack cheese; and McKaskle Family Farm, which sells organic white and brown rice. All four farms have worked with the company for more than 10 years.
Chipotle said its Farmers’ Market is in response to the pandemic and helps farms offset declines in demand from customers, such as restaurants and hotels.
There’s also a bit of a branding play at work for the chain, starting with the name of the market. Additionally, Director of Culinary and Menu Development Chef Chad Brauze will also take to the chain’s TikTok channel to share recipes that draw inspiration from the farmers market, accessible via farmersmarket.chipotle.com.
The market is part of a long-standing effort by the company to support farmers. It said it’s donated more than $500,000 so far to the National Young Farmers Coalition.