Chipotle Mexican Grill feels that tariffs on Mexican imports could raise costs and squeeze margins.
The chain of fast casual restaurants told CNBC that if U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposed tariffs on goods imported from Mexico gets implemented, the company’s costs could increase by $15 million in 2019, while its margins could get slashed by 20 to 30 basis points.
CFO Jack Hartung mentioned in a statement that Chipotle might consider covering the higher costs through a “modest” price hike on their items, among other potential solutions - should the tariffs become permanent.
Hartung emphasized that the company is committed to its “integrity principles”. He indicated that while premashed or processed avocados would probably be cheaper, the company would continue to use fresh ingredients as it is unwilling to short-change customers on quality and taste.
The tariffs on Mexican imports could gradually increase and could potentially get to as high as 25% this year, if Trump ends up implementing his plan.