I shared this over at my other blog, A Taste of Wonderland, but I had to share it here as well, because it just affected me and I wanted to hear your take on it!
When I first saw the new ad campaign that Chipotle is getting ready to launch, I wasn’t sure what to think. I was also a bit confused about their connection with Willie Nelson, and the fact that he covers Coldplay’s “The Scientist” in the two and a half minute commercial. But…it works! The ad made me cry by how true the message is, and how simple and easily understood it will be to viewers. What are your thoughts when you watch this?
Willie is a known advocate of getting things back to their natural state of being, and Chipotle claims to use sustainable vegetables and meats in their ingredients. I hope that Chipotle practices what they’re preaching, and that they can live up to this huge ad campaign and truly use sustainably farmed ingredients. Maybe some other big names in food will follow suit, and we can really get things back to where they started.
Here is the press release describing the project:
Chipotle Animated Short Film Shows Path to More Sustainable FarmingSoundtrack Cover of Coldplay’s “The Scientist” Sung by Willie Nelson Available on iTunes; Proceeds to Benefit the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation
DENVER, Aug 30, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE: CMG) has produced a new stop-motion animated short film called “Back to the Start” that depicts a farmer’s journey to sustainable farming. The film — a first for Chipotle — was directed by London-based Johnny Kelly and features a cover of the Coldplay song “The Scientist,” sung by music icon and family farm advocate Willie Nelson.
Chipotle plans to show the two-minute film nationally beginning in September. It will appear on nearly 5,700 movie theater screens in advance of feature films and will educate consumers about Chipotle’s favored farming methods, and demonstrate the differences between industrial farming and more sustainable methods. It can also be viewed online at Chipotle.com or on Facebook at Facebook.com/chipotle.
“We have always understood the importance of serving food that is raised right,” said Steve Ells, founder, chairman and co-CEO of Chipotle. “We produced this film to help illustrate the choices people face in deciding what to eat, and hope that it will encourage people to choose food that is raised with respect for the land, the animals, and the farmers that produce it.”
The film’s subject matter is enhanced by Nelson’s cover of Coldplay’s song, “The Scientist.” It follows the story of a farmer whose family farm has evolved over time into a factory farm. In a moment of self-reflection, the farmer realizes that his animal factory is not consistent with his vision for the farm. As the song lyrics suggest, the farmer goes “back to the start” by ridding his farm of its factory qualities and returning to more sustainable farming methods.
The song is available for purchase on iTunes, with proceeds ($.60 per download) benefitting the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation, which provides funding to support sustainable agriculture, family farming, and culinary education.
“We have a tremendous amount of respect for Willie Nelson, both as a musician and for his extraordinary efforts to support family farming,” said Ells. “We are thrilled to have his support for this project and hope that working together, we can help people understand the importance of food that is raised right.”
To view the video, visit Chipotle.com/backtothestart or Facebook.com/chipotle.
Steve Ells, founder, chairman and co-CEO, started Chipotle with the idea that food served fast did not have to be a typical fast food experience. Today, Chipotle continues to offer a focused menu of burritos, tacos, burrito bowls (a burrito without the tortilla) and salads made from fresh, high-quality raw ingredients, prepared using classic cooking methods and served in a distinctive atmosphere. Through our vision of Food With Integrity, Chipotle is seeking better food from using ingredients that are not only fresh, but that where possible are sustainably grown and naturally raised with respect for the animals, the land, and the farmers who produce the food. A similarly focused people culture, with an emphasis on identifying and empowering top performing employees, enables us to develop future leaders from within. Chipotle opened with a single restaurant in 1993 and currently operates more than 1,100 restaurants. For more information, visit Chipotle.com.