Chipotle looks to recover with temporary loyalty program

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NEW YORK — Chipotle is introducing a temporary loyalty program intended to get customers back into its stores following a series of food scares.

Already, the Mexican food chain has given away millions of burritos through coupons for entrees to fill up empty locations after an E. coli outbreak and norovirus cases last year sent sales plunging. In the first three months of this year, Chipotle’s sales at established locations were down about 30 percent.

On Monday, Chipotle said the new program will reward people based on the number of times they visit its stores each month, starting in July and running through September. Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. said people can earn a free entree after their fourth, eighth and 11th visit within a month.

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