Guzman y Gomez completes three year journey to eliminate all unacceptable additives, added preservatives, added colours and artificial flavours from their food menu.
Three years in the making, Guzman y Gomez (GYG) is setting a new industry standard today announcing that its food is 100% Clean. Aussies can now enjoy their favourite Mexican knowing it contains no added preservatives, artificial flavours, added colours or unacceptable additives*.
With research revealing that over 17 million Australians eat fast food on a regular basis, Guzman y Gomez is offering everyday Aussies the convenience, affordability and taste that they love about fast food, without compromising on quality or nutrition.
“At Guzman y Gomez, we’ve always believed that fast food doesn’t have to be bad food,” says Steven Marks, Founder and Global CEO at Guzman y Gomez. “Australians should never have to compromise on quality and eating whole real foods, even when it comes to fast food. When you order food it should be easy to avoid added preservatives, colours, artificial flavours and other nasties that offer very little nutritional value.
That’s not okay. At Guzman y Gomez, we’ve always used real, fresh, quality ingredients, and today, I’m so proud to say that we’ve achieved another significant milestone in our journey to reinvent fast food, with the removal of all added preservatives, artificial flavours, added colours or unacceptable additives from our food.”
What is Clean to GYG?
Founder and Global CEO, Steven Marks, and Head of Culinary, Cindy Flores, worked closely with an independent nutritionist, Sarah Patterson of The Nutrition Providers, to create GYG’s definition of Clean. Based on extensive research into additives and preservatives, consumer trends and the international food guidelines laid out by the World Health Organisation, GYG’s definition of Clean is:
* No added preservatives
* No artificial flavours
* No added colours
* No unacceptable additives
Guzman y Gomez is defining what it means to serve Clean fast-food and, in doing so, is setting a new industry standard for all other players in the fast food industry.
The journey to 100% Clean
With a mission to reinvent fast food, GYG started its journey to Clean in 2016, kicking off with an audit of all menu items. A list of unacceptable additives was also developed as a conscious effort to understand the ingredients that are believed to have health implications or have been subject to warnings. As part of Clean, GYG is taking a strong stance against such additives and wanted to ensure any ingredients that shouldn’t be found in food are completely removed. The company then began the transition to a 100% Clean food menu. This involved teaming up with new suppliers as well as working with a number of its current suppliers to make changes to products, challenging them to, at times, create entirely new products to fit within GYG’s strict Clean guidelines.
The extensive work involved sourcing, testing and trialing new menu alternatives over the following three years. In less than 12 months, GYG removed all added preservatives from its tortillas, corn chips and hard tacos, trialing several iterations in-store before transitioning to products with no added preservatives, nationwide. The journey also resulted in products like fries, cheese and even sauces and marinades achieving Clean status with no added preservatives:
Marinades and salsas — Last year GYG began sourcing direct from Mexico — meaning every bite of GYG contains authentic Mexican flavours with marinades and salsas that are less processed and free from added preservatives.
Fries — GYG launched Skin-On Fries with Chipotle Seasoning. These are 100% free from added preservatives and unacceptable additives.
Cheese — After consulting with eight suppliers locally, two in the United States, and reviewing over 30 cheeses, GYG rolled out an Australian preservative-free cheese in May 2019.
GYG’s journey to Clean isn’t the first time the Mexican fast food brand challenged industry norms. In 2017, as part of its mission to reinvent fast food, GYG became the first Australian fast-food brand to introduce free range chicken across its stores nationwide with its Fix Fast Food campaign. Since then, GYG has also rolled out 100% sow stall free pulled pork and hormone-free beef across all of its Australian stores — demonstrating that it’s possible to serve good food fast, without compromising on quality or animal welfare.
Steven Marks, Founder and Global CEO at Guzman y Gomez:
“Over the past decade we have been committed to changing fast food for the better and this is our proudest and most defining moment to date.
Our menu and processes are constantly evolving in response to global best-practice and, most importantly, customer demand. After extensive research into consumer attitudes and trends towards food, and ongoing feedback from our guests, it’s become clear that Clean is the new healthy.
Three years ago, we undertook a review of our ingredients and processes, and set out on our journey towards a 100% Clean food menu. Today, I can happily say that we’ve achieved it!”
Sarah Patterson, Managing Director at The Nutrition Providers:
“Nutrition is a fundamental consideration for any business in the food & beverage industry so it’s really great to see Guzman y Gomez not only commit to a Clean food menu but also raise the bar for fast-food players across the board. Consumers now more than ever have so much information to determine what healthy means to them and how they want to eat, so it has never been more crucial for fast-food companies to reconsider their ingredients and invest in what’s best for the customer.
In addition to being Clean, the food at GYG is fully customisable to suit different dietary requirements with options that are a great source of protein, low sugar and high in fibre.”
As part of its commitment to Clean, GYG will always be transparent to guests about what is in its food and continue to develop new products using only Clean ingredients.
For further information, head over to https://www.guzmanygomez.com/
More details on the journey to Clean, including a timeline and the list of unacceptable additives can be found here.
*Unacceptable additives: Ingredients that have been identified by the World Health Organisation as cancerous, faced large consumer backlash or have been subject to warnings in other parts of the world.
About Guzman y Gomez
Guzman y Gomez is Australia’s favourite Mexican. It is also Australia’s fastest-growing fast-food company, serving real, made-to-order Mexican food using fresh, whole produce and authentic ingredients. With speed and innovation at the core of the business, Guzman y Gomez is redefining fast food by showing it’s possible to serve good food, fast, without compromising on nutrition.
Guzman y Gomez was awarded the Uber Eats Asia Pacific 2019 Sustainability Award, Best Marketing Campaign for #bringcalhome and Best Multi-Site Restaurant of The Year at the 2018 QSR Media Awards and Best Customer Service Award in QSR by Roy Morgan Research in 2017.
Guzman y Gomez operates over 120 restaurants and drive-thrus across Australia, Singapore, Japan and soon in the United States, 80% of which are franchised. For more information, visit www.guzmanygomez.com.