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A new line of iceberg lettuce-less salads, developed right before the company opened its new test kitchen, boosted annual salad sales by 50 percent to $250 million, said David Farmer, vice president of product strategy and development.
Until now, the key rule for new products was that they had to be "cravable," Farmer said. While they still have to be cravable, he says, there’s an increasing emphasis on them also being healthy.
That, says Cathy, has prodded Chick-fil-A to be "more transparent." Last year it began offering "backstage tours" of its restaurants — where regular customers can request tours of the kitchens.
Ultimately, the chain plans to make that new transparency more literal.
They want to open up the kitchens and allow customers to watch dough being rolled and salads being freshly chopped.
Chick-fil-A will open 108 restaurants this year — most of them urban and a good chunk of them in New York City.
The new urban locations will have much more natural wood. And some of the urban chefs are even replacing their old uniforms with snazzy chefs coats.
This new Chick-fil-A is striving to be very different from what was. "We’re one foot out of fast food," Faulk said.
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