We don't envy the next person Chipotle finds to fill that role.
— Erika Adams
Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. is searching for a new head of food safety.
James Marsden, a former professor at Kansas State University who was hired by the Mexican chain in 2016 as it tried to bounce back from a food-safety crisis, is planning to retire next year and Chipotle has started looking for his replacement. He’ll likely step down in the second quarter, a company spokeswoman said in an email.
Chipotle, which counts investor Bill Ackman as one of its biggest shareholders, has seen its stock rally this year under new Chief Executive Officer Brian Niccol, who formerly ran Taco Bell. The chain has introduced more menu items and launched a marketing campaign and loyalty program pilot designed to entice in new customers.
Last month, Chipotle said it was implementing a new technology platform called Zenput at its more than 2,450 restaurants, in part to track food-safety protocols. That came about two months after the chain was forced to close an Ohio restaurant for cleaning after reports of employees and customers getting sick.
A company spokeswoman didn’t immediately reply to a request for additional information.
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