Signs of Avopocolypse appear at Chipotle

Illustration for article titled Signs of Avopocolypse appear at Chipotle
Photo: Melpomenem (iStock)

While you’ve all been obsessed with guacamole and avocado toast, people on the business side of the food industry have been waiting for the inevitable avopocalpse. Between rising demand, trade and border issues, soaring prices, climate change and violent drug cartels, the economics of avocados have become an increasingly sticky wicket, just waiting for the moment when a reusable straw will break the camel’s back. It seems as if that day has arrived for Chipotle, and customers who haven’t been paying any attention to this creamy, vitamin K packed-crisis are piiiiisssssed.


According to Business Insider, a recent transition to Peruvian avocados has sparked a harsh reaction from customers and employees alike. Complaints of hard, stringy avocados and brown “gross” guacamole, predictably, led to public shaming on social media.

There’s even a Twitter account called Save the Guac, which seems to believe that corporate greed is to blame for recent downturn in quality, and not the complex state of the avocado economy.

Chipotle’s chief communications officer Laurie Schalow told Business Insider the transition from Peruvian to Mexican sources of avocados happens annually at this time, and produces “normal variabilities” in the avocado supply.

So be patient, everybody: though we don’t know when, good guac is coming back. While you wait, check out this great video that explains a bit more about this fraught situation—it’ll make you realize that there are far more important things than a few brown spots on your avocado toast. At least Chipotle’s not serving squash guac.


Allison Robicelli is a writer, recipe czar, former professional chef, author of four (quite good) books, and The People's Hot Pocket Princess. Tweet me for recipe help: @Robicellis.


That Guy That Did The Thing

Allison, I swear I’m not going to do this on every one of your articles. It’s just been a slow week. But I’ve always thought it was funny that the Spanish explorers heard the Nahuatl word for the avocado fruit (āhuacatl) and rendered that as aguacate, then English people thought it sounded like the Spanish word for lawyer (avogado), and said, “Sure, that’s a good name for it.”

The word āhuacatl, by the way, is not the Nahuatl word for testicle, as you may have read elsewhere. It is the word for avocado. There is some slight evidence that it might have been used as a slang term for testicle, but we don’t say that “wiener” is the word for dick. We say it means someone from Vienna. Oh, and we also use it to refer to frankfurters, which means someone from Frankfurt. Oh, and hot dogs. And sometimes it means dick.

Nahuatl has also given us our words for chocolate (xocolātl), tomato (tomatl), coyote (coyōtl), ocelot (ōcēlōtl), and to bring us full circle, chipotle (chīlli pōctli).