Highly Organized Sustainable Food Is Next, Former McDonald’s Executive Says

Sprouts, sprouts, let it all out.
Sprouts, sprouts, let it all out. Photo: Courtesy WIRED

What sets Lyfe Kitchen apart from the multitude of fast-food startups angling to open hundreds of locations is its pedigree: Founder Mike Roberts is a former McDonald’s president and COO; the chefs are Tal Ronnen and Art Smith (the latter has had something of a busy month). Lyfe is an feel-good acronym for Love Your Food Everyday; the company is busy rehearsing the mood music in San Francisco, and now Wired looks into Lyfe Kitchen’s long-term strategy. Roberts wants to couple the efficiency-oriented supply-chain superstructure — usually blamed for our fast-food nation in the first place — with sustainable agriculture, all in order “to transform the way the world produces organic ingredients, doing for responsibly grown meat and veggies what McDonald’s did for factory-farmed beef.” The result is something like health food, that tastes like good food, made from slow food served like fast food. Rethinking the supply chain one step at a time, Lyfe Kitchen wants to have a few hundred locations in five years. [Wired, Related]