The Environment Is Literally Crying Over Chipotle's Fork Phenomenon

If there's one thing to know about Chipotle fans, it's that you don't mess with their forks. Don't forget the forks when you grab takeout, don't change fork suppliers, and don't suggest reusable alternatives like metal utensils. Dozens of angry fork users took to Reddit back in 2020 after Chipotle switched to individually wrapped forks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to one person, the "original Chipotle fork [was] a perfect design," but the temporary replacement was "unacceptable." They even suggested that whoever made the decision be fired. Yes, people got that bent out of shape over a fork.

However, the world's obsession with Chipotle forks runs much deeper than just resistance to change. Other Redditors claim to take extra forks for use at home, be it in kids' lunch boxes or in the kitchen. They cite "high-quality plastic" that won't scratch nonstick pans or break, but it will definitely contribute to the total of 200 million tons of plastic in the ocean or the 44 million tons of plastic that end up in landfills — not recycling plants — each year. Given how awful plastic is for the environment, what is it about these forks that make people look past their environmental impact?

Chipotle's forks provide an unmatched eating experience

Many of us go about our day-to-day lives thinking Chipotle food gets its iconic taste from the ingredients, but apparently, we're in the wrong. One TikTok user recently explained, "The Chipotle fork makes a difference in the taste of the bowl," and as such, she was frustrated she had forgotten to pick up a plastic fork from the restaurant.


I tried my bowl exactly how @eatwithchante does just added fajitas and OMG 🤤🤤🤌🏾🤌🏾🤌🏾 #chipotlebowl #chipotle

♬ original sound – cree 🧡

Still, what is so special about these disposable forks that people choose them over the perfectly fine silverware set they have at home? What makes a Chipotle customer decide to add one more fork to the 190 million tons of single-use plastics thrown out each year? One Reddit user suggested it was because the metals used in some silverware can react when they come into contact with food, especially acidic foods. This reaction can make your food taste funny.

Plastic utensils, on the other hand, allegedly don't have this problem, so you can experience your food to its full potential. Fair enough, we guess, but there are better alternatives than plastic –- higher-quality silverware like silver or gold, or even eco-friendly utensils like those sold by IncrEdible Eats – it could be fun to eat your Chipotle burrito bowl with a black pepper spork. And you know what's more fun? Not tossing disposable forks into the landfill to slowly decompose over the next 1,000 years.