GUEST ROOM | The Price of an Anti-Competitive Burrito

Chipotle is in the food services business; they operate in the competitive for-profit world. Stroll past their storefront on your next drive down South Meadow Street and competitive dynamics affecting their enterprise become clear: Moe’s Southwest Grill, Five Guys Burgers & Fries, Panera Bread, Taco Bell and many others all within a minute’s drive. Priced too high, Chipotle customers may opt to dine at a more affordable, but arguably inferior alternative. If the queue becomes too long, others may turn away. Chipotle has incentives to price fairly, offer distinctively tastier food than competition (hence the fresh, non-GMO, farm-sourced ingredients), and train employees to pack and fold burritos in assembly line manner.