E. coli, Salmonella, Norovirus: Chipotle, you’re gonna love it

Karlene Lukovitz of MediaPost reports that after battling since last summer to recover from a series of food contamination incidents, Chipotle Mexican Grill has released a new long-form video that returns to its pre-crisis brand messaging about the superiority of its fresh, natural ingredients over typical chipotle.BSfast-food fare.

According to Chipotle, the new video, “A Love Story,” began to be developed 18 months ago, before the restaurant chain’s first two contamination incidents in August 2015. 

Those salmonella and norovirus incidents were followed in Fall 2015 by an E. coli outbreak, and then by separate norovirus incidents in December 2015 and March 2016.

The latest video’s story is about two children who set up competitive all-natural juice stands. As they grow up and establish real businesses, they resort to competing by offering increasingly processed fast food with artificial ingredients. Ultimately, they unite, fall in love, have a family and launch a food truck offering Chipotle-like items in synch with their original standards of natural ingredients and preparation.

With all the natural things like E. coli, Salmonella and Norovirus.

Doesn’t sound like the food safety and marketing hucksters are talking.

In recent months, Chipotle has tried to revive its traffic and sales with free-food offers. But its Q1 2016 same-store sales were down 30%, and it reported its first loss as a public company. Its stock price has dropped by 35% over the past 12 months. 

The new video ends by promoting its latest revival effort: a “summer rewards” program called Chiptopia.