A new drive-thru salad bar should scare legacy fast food brands

Salad and Go drive thru imageSalad and GoA worker at Salad and Go.Salad and Go

Fast food drive-thrus are attractive for four main reasons: the food's cheap, fast, delicious, and you never need to leave your car. A new chain is offering those four things plus one more: food that's healthy.

Called Salad and Go, it has six locations in Arizona and serves ... you guessed it. Its co-founder, Roushan Christofellis, hopes it will serve as an alternative to legacy fast food.

"We know that so many of those people eating from traditional drive-thru fast food are forced to go there, because they, just like me, needed something convenient and affordable, and that was their only option," she tells Business Insider.

Salad and Go sells 48-ounce salads, all priced between $5.74 and $8.23 depending on whether you add chicken, steak, or shrimp. It also offers soups, smoothies, and breakfast, which all cost around $4.

Its drive-thru model is what largely allows the chain to keep prices low, Christofellis says. Since the 650-square-foot locations don't have interior seating, Salad and Go has low operational costs, and as a result it can keep its salads under $6.

The chain plans to launch eight more Arizona locations by the end of 2017, and elsewhere in the US in the next two years.

Check it out.

View As: One Page Slides

Salad and Go's six locations are in Arizona.

Salad and Go's six locations are in Arizona.

Buying food there works just like most drive-thrus. First, you order at the outdoor menu ...

 

... and then pull up to the window where you pay and collect your meal.

... and then pull up to the window where you pay and collect your meal.

Customers can order salads in bowls or wraps.

 

If they don't want to eat in their cars, they can park and sit at one of the outdoor tables in front.

 

The chain also sells soups. Here's a three bean vegetable chili.

 

There are also a few lemonades on the menu, like the cucumber mint one pictured below ...

 

... and smoothies. The one, about to be blended, features pineapple, mango, spinach, kale, and ginger.

 

Salad and Go sources its ingredients from local farmers in bulk. Not all of the ingredients are organic, but Christofellis says the chain will expand its organic offerings more as it grows.

 

The US market for healthy fast-casual food has grown by 550% since 1999, more than 10 times the growth seen in the fast food industry over the same period.

 Source: The Washington Post

Many fast food brands are trying to keep up with lower-calorie chains like Dig Inn and Sweetgreen. For example, McDonald's and Chick-fil-A are now testing kale and broccolini, and Taco Bell recently added more vegetable-rich options to its menu.

 

Salad and Go fits into this trend. "We started asking ourselves, 'What if we could make great-tasting and good-for- you food, with the same convenience, affordability and speed as traditional drive-thru fast food?," Christofellis says.

Salad and Go fits into this trend. "We started asking ourselves, 'What if we could make great-tasting and good-for- you food, with the same convenience, affordability and speed as traditional drive-thru fast food?," Christofellis says.

Since it's a drive-thru, Christofellis says the chain is competing more with traditional fast food mega-brands, like McDonald's and Burger King, than fast casual restaurants, like Chipotle and Panera Bread.

Since it's a drive-thru, Christofellis says the chain is competing more with traditional fast food mega-brands, like McDonald's and Burger King, than fast casual restaurants, like Chipotle and Panera Bread.

salad and go

If the chain continues to expand, it may pose a threat to legacy fast food chains.

If the chain continues to expand, it may pose a threat to legacy fast food chains.
Subscribe to whatsappSubscribe to whatsapp
Add Comment()
Comments ()
X
Sort By:
Be the first one to comment.
We have sent you a verification email. This comment will be published once verification is done.