Chipotle's latest plague has arrived, according to analysts, but fear not: This one won't make you sick. The fast-casual burrito chain is suffering from what experts are calling "menu fatigue," Business Insider reported, meaning customers are apparently getting tired of the same options on the menu all the time.
The company's menu has remained largely unchanged in since the first restaurant opened in Colorado in 1993, with the exception of the vegetarian protein option sofritas, which was widely introduced in 2014. Analysts Karen Short and Brett Levy called out Chipotle's "lack of interest in innovation over the last decade," and Short, who works with Deutsche Bank, downgraded the company's stock rating from "hold" to "sell."
But do people really need more options at Chipotle? Business Insider previously determined that Chipotle's various proteins, starches, condiments, and vessels provide a total of 655,360 possible combinations, meaning you could eat there every day for more than 1,700 years and never repeat a meal. (Plus, many people seem to order the exact same thing on every visit just out of habit.)
Menu options aside, Chipotle's E. Coli-related disaster sent revenue plummeting, with same-store sales down 36 percent in January compared to last year. The company has a clear plan for recovery, though, and it remains to be seen whether this so-called "menu fatigue" will play a role in winning back the hearts of American burrito-eaters — or not.