Chipotle once had a close relationship with McDonald’s.
The Big Mac chain invested in Chipotle’s business in 1998 when it had 14 locations. By 2005, McDonald’s had a 90% stake — and Chipotle had 460 locations.
During that period, McDonald’s executives invited Chipotle founder Steve Ells to one of the company’s chicken farms, and Ells was apparently shocked by what he saw there, Bloomberg reports.
After McDonald’s invited Ells to a chicken farm in Arkansas, Ells’ father, Bob Ells, told Bloomberg, “he came back and said it was absolutely the most disgusting thing he’d ever seen in his life.”