Sweetgreen’s is a restaurant that is different than other chain fast food places. It sells food that is organic, fresh, and healthy. Additionally, each restaurant gets its ingredients from farms that are local to its location. The restaurant now has 40 locations which are located in the Northeastern United States and in California.
One of the co-CEO’s of Sweetgreen’s Nathaniel Ru, said that the restaurant was premised on the idea of serving customers healthy, great tasting food. When he and the other co-founder of Sweetgreens were attending Georgetown University they all attended an entrepreneurship class. They also came from families of immigrants who had started their own company. They developed the idea of Sweetgreen’s by noting that there were no healthy restaurant options around the university.
Nathaniel and his business partners established the first Sweetgreen’s near Georgetown University and it proved to be a very successful restaurant concept. They’re first big test occurred during winter break as all of the students went home for the holiday. They expected business at the restaurant to be slower and yet it was still very busy. This proved the broad appeal of Sweetgreen’s which now has restaurants both near and far from university campuses.
Nathaniel Ru has said that he wants to build a business that stands for more than just providing people food. He wants to help create a culture of healthy eating that primarily eats food from local sources. This not only helps build local economies but it also cuts down on the environmental impact or running a business. Getting ingredients from local sources cause far fewer greenhouse gasses than getting food shipped to each restaurant from across the United States or even from around the world.
Rather than clustering their locations near other fast food options as most of the chains operate, Nathaniel Ru points out that they establish theirs in areas that are up and coming. The idea is to place restaurants near where people live rather than just near where they work. In this way they stay busy not only during lunch hour but also have lines out the door for dinners and during the weekend hours.
Another important thing at Sweetgreen, according to Nathaniel Ru, is an open kitchen design. They want customers to see and experience their food being created. The company focuses on being transparent and showing rather than telling their customers how they treat the food that they serve.
Follow Nathaniel Ru on twitter @nathanielru.