Long salad lines after New Year’s prompt anger from New Yorkers

Meanwhile, fast food joints are seeing a staggering dip in sales

Sarah Harvard
New York
Friday 04 January 2019 22:15
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It looks like some New Yorkers are serious about eating health as a part of their New Year’s resolution, but the long lines are prompting some disorderly conduct from very some very hangry people.

On Friday, the New York Post reported several incidents where very hungry New Yorkers cursing while attempting to wait outrageously long lines for a lunch salad.

“You guys can go f*** yourselves,” one businessman is overheard telling his colleagues when he ditched the over 100-people long line at Chopt in Midtown.

“The last few days after New Year’s have been crazy because of the resolutions and people wanting to eat healthy,” a salad eater told the Post after getting their Chopt kale-salad.

Maya Dillon, 46, said when she went to a Just Salad restaurant in Midtown, the line was out the door.

An employee for Just Salad’s Midtown location said the long lines are at its peak in January since a lot of people tend to choose "eating healthier" as a part of their New Year's resolution.

The over-the-top long lines at salad restaurants are resulting in a very low lunchtime turnout at fast-food joints. A security guard at a Midtown McDonald's said the establishment typically is very busy, but so far this month, business has been was very slow.

Chick-fil-A saw a very slow lunch hour. An employee said their location is typically busy in December with tourists in town. But in January, there's a staggering dip in business.

This means it’s good for business over at Sweetgreen, another salad chain restaurant, that’s profiting of the post-New Year “healthy eating” boom.

Julie Pastor, 30, had to wait in a 50-person line to get one guacamole-and-greens bowl. She said the line was out-the-door and wrapped around the entire sidewalk and another customer called it a "psycho line."

Fast-casual salad chains are taking advantage of the hype with Sweetgreen offering a New Year’s resolution reward program and Chopt aggressively promoting its lowest-calorie salads.

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“New Year’s resolutions as easy as one, two, three — all under 400 calories,” an ad on Chopt’s Facebook said.

The long lines are obviously frustrating customers, so some chains are looking into other ways to curtail the problem. Sweetgreen’s co-founder Nicolas Jammet said the company is encouraging customers to order online through a no-fee delivery service.

“We know resolutions can be hard,” Mr Jammet said, “but our goal at Sweetgreen is to make eating real food easy.

But it doesn't look like the long lines will last for too long. It's been reported that about 80 per cent of New Year's resolutions fail.

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