Chipotle customers are reporting ingredient shortages as the chain says it is facing high beef and shipping costs
Hollis Johnson / Business Insider
Customers say Chipotle locations don't have key ingredients like rice and steak.
Chipotle says it faces high beef and freight costs, but there isn't a system-wide flaw.
Taco Bell, Starbucks and other chains are also struggling with shortages.
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Some Chipotle locations are running out of key ingredients, according to customers who post online.
While there is no official message from Chipotle, customers say they have visited places that have run out of vegetables, guacamole, steaks, rice, and even tortillas.
"We have no supply problems in the entire network, but there are occasional failures in individual restaurants," a spokesman told Insider.
"We are being challenged by several industry-wide issues, particularly beef and freight costs and staffing shortages at our suppliers."
Chipotle locations struggled with bottlenecks during a free appetizer deal in early July. Five Chipotle employees from four states told Insiders they were running out of ingredients such as lettuce, sour cream, coriander, brown rice, steak, vegetables, corn and guacamole.
In June, Reuters reported on a New Jersey chipotle that was out of barbacoa and carnitas during a weekday lunch rush. A nearby location contained both ingredients, and Chipotle told Reuters that these did not reflect general supply chain issues.
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The entire restaurant industry is facing supply chain problems that are creating bottlenecks and affecting customers. Taco Bell is telling its customers that there aren't multiple ingredients, and social media posts have pointed out a lack of basic ingredients like chicken, beef, and various types of taco shells. The chain told Insiders that bottlenecks were due to "national transport delays" affecting the entire industry.
In June, Starbucks announced an internal memo that the chain was temporarily holding 25 items due to supply chain issues. Some stores have signs that read "We are currently experiencing temporary outages on some of our food and beverage items." These signs were officially distributed to individual stores by Starbucks companies, a spokesman previously confirmed to Insider.
Bottlenecks and price increases affect the entire retail sector. Bicycles, cars, meat, cheese, and even ketchup are all getting more expensive, in part due to disruptions in the global supply chain from COVID-19, plus shipping container shortages and port congestion. These factors led to what experts called a "perfect storm" in global transportation.
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