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Kanye West is inadvertently helping to deflect Chipotle's E. coli scandal

Published by Business Insider on Mon, 11 Jul 2016

A rap song featuressome of thebest press Chipotle has had in recent memory. In May, Schoolboy Q released a new song called 'THat Part.'However, the most iconic line of the song comes, not from Schoolboy Q, but Kanye West: "Beggars can't be chooser, b----, this ain't Chipotle," raps West.Following Chipotle's E. coli scandal, the company has struggled to regain trust and turn around customer perception of the chain. Chipotle's same-store sales dropped nearly 30% in the first quarter of the year, after an E. coli outbreak in late 2015 sickened more than 50 people in 14 states. Revenue dropped 23.4%, to $834.5 million.A single tweet last week about a rumored food poisoning related to Chipotle lead to the burrito chain's stock falling as much as 3.5% in just a few hours. In this climate, positive social media responses toChipotle matter more than ever ' and West is helping the chain get just that. A search of Chipotle on Twitter results in seemingly endlesstweets referencing 'THat Part':Beggars can't be choosers, bish this ain't chipotle!!' Kyra Santoro (@kyrasantoro) July 11, 2016Beggars can't be choosers, bi**h this ain't ChipotleNi**a with an attitude, I feel like O'SheaWalking, living legend, man I feel like Kobe' Yonii (@ProYoni) July 11, 2016Beggars can't be choosers bitch this ain't chipotle' Deanna Saccente (@deannasacc) July 11, 2016beggars can't be choosers bitch this ain't chipotle '''''''''' granola granny (@VERSACE_TEARS) July 11, 2016A quick scan of the search "Chipotle" on Twitter on Monday revealed that about one in 10 Chipotle references were, in fact, related to the song. The lyric isn't exactly on brand for the chain, or it would mention something aboutfresh ingredients, but a lyric emphasizing Chipotle's customizability is a positive for the chain in a sea of negativity. Perhaps the positive social media push from the song is all part of a master plan from West.The rapper has been a dedicatedChipotle customer since at least 2007, when he introduced fellow hip hop artist and Chipotle loyalist Big Sean to the chain. West is a fan ofquick-service restaurants beyond Chipotle. "Says she want diamonds, I took her to Ruby Tuesdays, If we up in Fridays, I still have it my way," he rapped in his 2005 track, Gone, notes Genius. Further, West has interest in fast food from a business perspective. In 2008, West bought the rights to open 10 Fatburger locations in Chicago. When he married Kim Kardashian in 2014, he reportedly bought her 10 Burger King franchises located throughout Europe ' though no locations were ultimately opened in the Kardashian-West name. Vogue cover and 10 Burger Kings for a wedding present. #kimye #likeaking pic.twitter.com/R7VHsz4PGe' Burger King (@BurgerKing) March 21, 2014One thing is clear: West is a fan of chain restaurants, specifically Chipotle, and the fast-casual chain is equally a fan of the rapper. In June, the company tweeted out this reference to Kanye West's 2007 hit, Can't Tell Me Nothing: Guaaaaac guac guac guac. Wait 'til I get my money right.' Chipotle (@ChipotleTweets) June 18, 2016SEE ALSO:People are starting to make their restaurant choices based on Pokemon GoJoin the conversation about this storyNOW WATCH: We tried Chipotle's newest menu item, which will be available nationwide later this year
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