A spokesperson for Chipotle announced that approximately a third of its 1,724 stores have temporarily stopped serving slow-braised pork “carnitas” as a menu option. Local stores in Pennsylvania and New York are among those that are newly pork-free, and the AP notes that at least one location in the city has posted a “Sorry No Carnitas” sign in its front windows so as not to disappoint customers.
The fast-casual chain’s spokesperson said that a routine audit of a supplier on Friday had revealed the company had violated its standards. No other details were given, but the now-suspended supplier has a chance to remedy the issue and get “back on board” with the company, which uses millions of pounds of sustainably raised, hormone- and antibiotic-free meat each year. In select cases when its supply chain is affected by shortages, Chipotle has been known to switch to less sustainable purveyors; when that happens, the chain puts a “conventionally raised” tag on its menu. When it comes to pork, which accounts for less than 10 percent of sales, Chipotle says it won’t seek out alternative suppliers. “In this case, we won’t make that kind of substitution,” its spokesperson said.