From Soup to Fries: Amy’s Joins the “Clean” Fast Food Club

The well-known organic food brand will launch Amy’s Drive Thru later this summer.

Business

In two weeks, an organic farmer at an undisclosed California potato patch will harvest the first crop of potatoes destined for the fryer in the kitchen at the soon-to-launch Amy’s Drive Thru restaurant in Rohnert Park, California. The fast food restaurant with a twist is the brainchild of Amy’s Kitchen, the popular frozen food and soup company.

It took two years, and thousands of pounds of potatoes, to find the right organic variety of potato for fresh-cut french fries cooked in sunflower oil. “Most businesses would go to a company and buy a bunch of frozen potatoes,” says John Paneno, Director of Sourcing at Amy’s Kitchen. “Amy’s started from scratch. We hired experts who could find the best varieties that met our sensory requirements. We had to figure out where they grew best and who is the best farmer to process them. We’re not taking any shortcuts.”

In late June, the meticulously sourced french fries will debut at the official launch of the first Amy’s Drive Thru.

Customers have asked the company’s owners to enter into the restaurant business for two decades, says co-founder and co-CEO Andy Berliner, who oversees the company with his wife, Rachel.

“About four years ago, we decided to do more of a traditional drive-through restaurant, but with organic, vegetarian, pesticide-free, and GMO-free food,” Berliner tells Civil Eats. The menu, which the company says is made with around 95 percent certified organic ingredients, will be familiar to fast food fans: burritos, pizza, shakes, chili, salads, and, of course, French fries.

Creating organic and good-tasting menu items has taken an inordinate amount of work. A task only compounded by the fact that all menu items will be available in regular, gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan configurations.

The price point is higher than most fast food, but inline with fast casual chains like Chipotle and Panera. Customers will be able to buy a meal for under $9 and have it delivered within three-and-a-half minutes, a key to drive-thru success.

It’s important to note that the Berliners avoid the term “healthy fast food.” “We’re not calling it healthy because we do use salt and oil,” says Rachel Berliner. “It wouldn’t sell if we weren’t frying it in oil. You have to reach a medium. It just tastes good and it’s clean.”

“Better-for-you,” is how her husband Andy puts it.

The couple started Amy’s Kitchen in 1987 when they developed a frozen vegetarian pot pie out of their kitchen in Petaluma, California, a Northern California town that remains the company’s headquarters. Twenty-seven years later, the company has grown an average of 30 percent a year, according to Andy Berliner.

With processing plants in Oregon, Santa Rosa, and Idaho, and nearly 2,000 employees, it has evolved into one of the biggest selling frozen food and canned soup companies in the U.S. Since Amy’s Kitchen isn’t publicly traded, and is family-owned and operated, exact sales figures aren’t public knowledge. But on a 2012 episode of How I Made My Millions, the Berliners said the company earned upwards of $300 million in sales that year. Three years later, that number has shot up to $500 million according to a senior manager in communications.

At a time when other companies are working hard to remove genetically engineered and other highly processed ingredients from their menus, Amy’s Drive Thru, by virtue of the parent company’s history, has an upper hand. “We haven’t changed. Organic, vegetarian and non-GMO is who we are,” says Berliner.

As consumer demand for local and organic food continues to skyrocket, the time has never been better for a venture into “clean” fast food. McDonald’s may have changed their tune about kale, but fast food won’t shake its reputation for industrially produced meat, low-quality produce, and large quantities of of fat, sodium, and sugar anytime soon. Now a new breed of restaurants aim to clean up fast food’s reputation–and change the eating habits for legions of Americans along the way. Indeed, Amy’s Drive Thru is part of a larger trend taking place throughout the U.S.

Chains like Burgerville and Shake Shack fill their menus with antibiotic-free hamburgers, fresh-cut fries, and shakes made from local strawberries. In the Bay Area, high-profile chefs Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson are readying for the fall launch of Loco’l, a fast food joint that will use quality, organic ingredients while maintaining the taste, convenience, and price point of traditional fast food. (Some menu items may cost as little as 99-cents.) In a touch you won’t find at Wendy’s, the hamburgers at Loco’l are tucked between whole-grain buns created by Chad Robertson of the notorious San Francisco-based Tartine Bakery.

“Right now, we have a whole society that’s been eating preservatives and processed food, that’s being brainwashed by billions of dollars of industry, and we can’t just say, ‘Yo, eat this kale,’” Choi told Paper. “So what we have to do is pick food in a structure that makes sense. But then inside the structure is real food. So, for example, there are chicken nuggets [on our menu], but those chicken nuggets are made using really good birds, using rice flour to coat it, making a sauce out of real tomatoes and soybean and fermented chili paste. But they don’t know any of this; they just think it’s chicken nuggets.”

While Choi appears to be targeting eaters who don’t go looking for “better-for-you” options, and easing them into changing their habits, Amy’s benefits from a brand that has wide recognition among the health food crowd. Now, the location of the first Amy’s Drive Thru will allow the company to source local produce from farms like Bloomfield Organics and other small growers. Paneno says their sourcing philosophy is to “start local and work our way out.”

“We’re blessed to be in California,” he adds, fresh off a morning of sampling cucumbers, straight from the fields, to be turned into pickles for the drive-thru. Still, the restaurant needs to ensure supply, which will likely mean sourcing to the north or south if the demand arises.

According to Paneno, Amy’s ag field reps monitor all stages of the growing process and ag managers work through the soil-management, harvesting, and clean-up of the food products, until they arrive for processing at the Amy’s plant or kitchen.

As the Berliners see it, all of these locally sourced and pesticide-free foods don’t really matter if restaurant employees work in abysmal conditions for poverty wages.

“We’ll be paying more than anyone else in the market,” says Andy Berliner, when asked about entry-level wages for Amy’s Drive Thru. Employees will receive a starting wage of $12 an hour, lower than demands for a $15 an hour living wage in Sonoma County, but higher than the statewide minimum wage of $9 an hour. Employees will also receive medical benefits through a company-owned health center, and vacation days.

Only time can tell whether sustainably minded fast food joints like Amy’s Drive-Thru and Loco’l will thrive in the face of competition from established fast food giants (the first Amy’s Drive-Thru will be located down the street from a wildly popular In-N-Out Burger).

If this pioneer attempt is successful, expansion is a definite possibility, says Andy Berliner. They’ll take the process slow, and expand when ready, he adds. But, signs point to a sea change in consumer demands when it comes to fast food. In the face of declining sales profits as food-savvy millennials defect to new fast-casual establishments, McDonald’s recently set out out to redefine itself as a “modern, progressive burger company.”

Rachel Berliner recounts how a post about the restaurant’s launch on an anti-GMO website led to hundreds of letters from all over the country.

“People were writing in to ask when Amy’s Drive Thru was coming to their town,” Berliner says. “My feeling is that the restaurant is something that’s really needed.”

 

 

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  1. benfield, janet
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    Hope you come east soon We're growing organic tomatoes in Seaford DE. And can grow just about anything this time of year!
  2. Judy Williams
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    So glad to hear it. We need good clean fast food.
    Any plans for Florida yet?
    Would love to see an Amy's in the tampa area
  3. Lori Taha
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    I am very interested in being part of gaining an Amy's restaurant for the Des Moines Iowa Community.
  4. sheena thompson
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    Hope you come to pa soon! Lancaster grows lots of organic food!
  5. Tanya
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    Thank you for giving those of us who understand how damaging foods (I use the word food lightly) from McD. Wendys, Arby's and such are. I live in Pa and I hope that you will soon be here and throughout the nation. Best of luck and again thank you.
    P.S. Please don't ever sell out to the garbage sell companies.
  6. Debra Medina
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    great concept, looking forward to the opening . The world needs this kind of consumption change!!
  7. Amber Barnard
    Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! We are long overdue for clean and non GMO fast food with healthier options! My dream come true!!!
  8. Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
    Great news! Just want to remind myself that it doesn't mean its good for you! But natural is always better!
  9. Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I'm curious to know if the meats will come from factory farms or if the animals will be 100% grass fed? This includes pork. Pigs are smarter than dogs and equally as self aware, loyal, and loving. But it's very difficult to find pasture raised pork. It seems like 95% of it is factory farmed. And what's wrong with coconut oil? I say they use that for cooking! Can Amy's make any kind of promise that they'll stay far away from Canola Oil? So many questions...
    • Twilight Greenaway
      Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
      As the story mentions, the food will be vegetarian.
  10. Marilyn R. Sullivan
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Yes, the time has finally come for some good, wholesome fast food that is organic and vegetarian! Let's save the cows for ice-cream! And let the chickens roam free!
    Everybody wins and we become a healthier nation!
    Congratulations, Amy! And God speed in your new endeavor!
  11. Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Thanks for a helpful, in depth article!
  12. deborah sato
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Thank you for giving us a healthy alternative to the few places to get a quick meal that's healthy. I hope the movement spreads all over CA, and the nation !! <3
  13. Maryellen Folsom
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    This is fabulous News! Just wish it was in Massachusetts..
  14. Cindy
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Way to go! Thank you for leading the way to cleaning up our options in fast food:) Hope to see "Amy's Drive Thru" in Cleveland, OH
  15. Misty Bryant
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I would love to know if and when you will be offering franchise opportunities? I would be very interested in opening one here in KY!
  16. Zory Hill
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Hi,
    As a 50 year old woman who has worked 27 years in the plumbing industry, I am ylooking to start my own new venture here in Portland, Or. We take food very seriously up here and I believe Amy's new fast food restaurant will become a booming business. I'd like to open up a franchise for Amy's. Let's see how it goes in Rohnert Park and I'll do some research up here for locations to serve the public.
    Joyfully,
    Zory Hill
  17. Jessica
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I LOVE THIS! Come to the east coast!
  18. Cathy Avallone
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Would love to have an Amy's in the Folsom/El Dorado Hills area of CA. I enjoy your products and as a three time cancer survivor would love to go out to eat and be confident that the food I'm eating is actually nourishing my body.
  19. Olivia
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I love this article! I hadn't heard of Amy's before this, I live in MD and work outside Washington D.C. and I've been wondering for a couple years if this sort of thing is possible. I always thought that, especially since people here are so rich, if a healthy fast-food option was made available, they'd quickly become obsessed. It's cool to know that this idea has already been turned into reality and has been working great for some time now. This is the kind of place I'd be proud to spend my money and recommend to my friends.
  20. Denise Gonzalez
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I live in Virginia, and I am an Ovarian Cancer Victor, My treatment was a High Alkaline/Low Acidity Diet. I found your soups and some of your frozen foods were within the parameters of my diet. My diet continues and will have to continue for the rest of my life. I love your food, and I am looking forward to more of your foods.
  21. Rena Moretti
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    All the best of everything to you! Y'all rock!!!!!!!
  22. Diane Hulme
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Amy's will now give people a more healthy choice. That is all anyone can hope for. There is an obesity and diabetes epidemic in the US and the average person can not depend on their doctors or mainstream media to let them know the real dangers of eating GMO and pesticide laden foods. I do not think any kind of french fries should be eaten but the reality is some people will eat them no matter what they know. This way is a better way, if not perfect.

    Thank you. I hope this will be a huge success!
  23. Marie
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    This is great news! I have been eatin Amy's from the beginning. I have to watch my gluten but still look for any new food items. Now I wish I lived in the robbery park area not the Midwest!! Will stop by when I am back home:)
  24. Marcia
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    So nice! I would love to see one near me! I live in central California near Merced
  25. Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Hallelujah! Better have these stores franchised out QUICK! We are at the tipping point!

    Thanks so much!
    Linda in Idaho
  26. Elizabeth Francoeur
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    This sounds Amazing! I already enjoy many of Amy's products and as a person with Celiac disease, I would feel good eating at your drive through! Can you please come to Maine? How about a franchise?
  27. Renee
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Is sunflower oil a healthy alternative? Really?
  28. Bobbie
    Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    So happy to hear about amy's please come to Southern Oregon
  29. Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    Please bring Amy's Drive Thru to Bellevue, Nebraska.♡Will this restaurant offer gluten free options?
  30. Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
    I have been vegan since 2005, I Love Amy's Foods!! God=Speed, One Love N' Light~.~I would love to help in the Business:)

    Kozmickreationz.weebly.com
    kozmickreationz@yahoo.com
  31. Rosalia
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    About time to have one non-GMO burger fast food, do you do franchise?
  32. Julie
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I'm so excited to have a place like Amy's coming to my area. Finally a place to get a quick meal that is in line with my way of eating. Bring it on!!!!
  33. Rennie Luttrull
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Amy' please come to Evansville Indiana,Now. I'm hungry for healthy Real food.you've got it and I want it, Now!!!
  34. Lauren Ayers
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    The picture shows a burger but there is no mention of burgers in the story. I understood Amy's to be a vegetarian company, because when I called to suggest that they use microencapsulated fish oil in some products they said that was impossible. My point was that parents could buy enriched foods like that to insure their kids get get enough DHA and EPA in a food form (it is the equivalent of adding some powdered milk or nutritional yeast to a food to make it more nutritious). DHA and EPA are crucial for immunity, mental health, and intellectual capacity, and most Americans are deficient in these essential fatty acids (probably because the government refuses to set a standard requirement for them). School food contains zero DHA and EPA.
  35. Anne Frase
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Will you be franchising?
  36. Susan Payne
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please come East!!! Love Love Love Amy's products.
  37. Eileen Maue
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Wishing that we had an Amy's in North East Pa..
    Good Luck to you at Amy's.
  38. MARY CRUMLEY
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Amy's YAYA....come to the Oregon Coast
  39. Cat
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Yeah Amy . .. I hope u will make it to Boulder, CO... We are very careful of what we eat and many vegetarians, vegans live, work here . Best wishes ...
  40. Cat
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Better grapeseed oil for frying ... hope only veggie burgers ..no meat ...
  41. Ryan
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    we could use a few of these in Orange County California. I know lots of people that love your frozen products and would go crazy over this.
  42. Lois
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I am thrilled to see Amy's moving into the "fast food" market. I use many of Amy's products because they are kosher and non-meat and non-dairy. I hope you will come to the Long Island, NY area.
    Thank you for your wonderful products.
  43. Heather
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Yes!! So Excited about this!! Portland, OR would be the Best place for your second restaurant! :-)
  44. Brenda Alley
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please come to Maine!!!
  45. Andrea Vargas
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    i would love to see you in Florida too!! We have many local organic farms all over!!
  46. Cindy
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I hope you are so very successful in this endeavor that you can go nationwide as I'm in Ohio. I am an organic gardener and have been for forty one years. This year I was finally able to plant entire non gmo plants and seeds! Best of luck and please consider coming this way!
  47. wendy pierre
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I am so happy to see this! I am a recent graduate of Le cordon Bleu in Atlanta, and an advocate for healthy cooking and baking. I told my classmates that this was going to be the new trend but they laughed at me!! Please come to ATL!
  48. Roxy
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please come to the Bellevue Washington area too!!!!!
  49. amber
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Wish it was coming to upstate ny. Cali always gets the good ones :(
  50. Steve Vankleef
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Awesome this is needed as more people become aware of the gmo lies. Please open one on Maui when things move in that direction. I believe you have a gold mine here! Thanks so much for having healthy food options!
  51. Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I saw your article on Facebook. I am so glad there are going to be choices. I have been using your products for several years and have recommended them to several friends. Everyone is very pleased with them. I can't wait for a drive-thru in my town,
  52. karin johnston
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    That is so great ! I hope we get it soon in LA also
  53. lynn godmilow
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    This will succeed wonderfully. One of the most popular and terrific restaurants in Philadelphia is Vedge. Hard to get a reservation there. Americans are waking up to understanding that processed food from animals full of antibiotics and hormones and vegetables and fruits sprayed with toxic chemicals are responsible for our obesity and many of diseases like diabetes type 2.
  54. Sharon
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    would love to see this come to Syracuse, NY area!
  55. Susan Massagli
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    You should open one in novato.
  56. Ashley
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    We would love to see come to Klamath Falls, OR!! Right on the California boarder and there is a Army base here who would love your food!
  57. Mark Murray
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please tell me there is a possibility of franchising because I already know I could build two or three in San Antonio and a couple in Austin and they would be as packed as the new In-N-Out's in Texas..,
  58. Lisa Greene
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    As a 25 year vegetarian and clean eater, I have raised 4 vegetarian kiddos. Throughout all of these years it has been so challenging to eat outside of home, so I'm very excited with this idea! I hope very much that its a success and that you can quickly expand to northern Oregon or southwest Washington. Your convenience meals have always been an enjoyable treat for our family. Thanks for what you do and good luck!
  59. Michelle Szymanski
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please come to Delray Beach in South Florida!!
  60. Robin Pendleton
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    This is soooooooooo AWESOME!!!!! We desperately need this type of fast food restaurant!! I do hope it will make it to North Carolina soon!
  61. Jasmine Villafana
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Hope you come to Houston, TX soon!
  62. Caley
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Bring it to COLORADO!!!
  63. Janelle Reyes
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I would LOVE to see something like this in WI where I live. Have wished this for a long time... Hopefully someday it'll happen here. Thanks for seeing that Vision and acting on it!!
  64. Anne Smith
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Can't wait til an Amy's Fast Food Drive Thru comes to NH! Real food a gluten/lactose person can get and not get ill!
  65. Steve K
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    You will do well! I am down for non-gmo fast food. Hey, can it then be called "Healthy Fast Food"? :) Please come to So Cal!!! Thank you, Steve K
  66. D
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I hope to see a franchise in SoCal soon! We need more establishments like this!
  67. Heidi
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I would love to have Army's restaurant out here and I speak for Many others in Missouri, Me and my fiancé would love to help be apart of helping make this happen anyway we can. Please! And Thank You!
  68. Sheri Talaga
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Love Amy's products, love this idea! If only I lived in Cali instead of Wisconsin - I could eat out without wondering what I was eating and I could apply for a decent job without selling my soul!
    Come to Wisconsin!!!
  69. Dana
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Please put one in Philadelphia! Restaurant business is booming here...
  70. Ashley Thompson
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    Bravo Amy's! So proud of you starting a healthy fast food drive thru restaurant . I hope it's wildly successful so you can expand to Orange County. Forever grateful to you for providing organic and non GMO choices to the public.
  71. Gabriela Montoya
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    This sounds fantastic! I've been vegetarian for 5 years and love Amy's goods. We need more locations, especially in Philadelphia!!!
  72. Sheri Garcia
    Thursday, May 28th, 2015
    I've been eating Amy's products since the beginning , love the idea of a fast food restaurant , I've always said we need one here in. ventura, ca Please !!
  73. Laura
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Yes! Please make a location in Seattle! This is amazing. <3
  74. jena sulimova
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Come to las Vegas nv
  75. Doris Eckel
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    I am so exited you are going to Open your Restaurants, hopefully there will be one not too far away from us.
    We need to start eating healthy in USA free of all the harmfully grown fruits and veggies, as well as meat that has been fed all the unhealthy hormones and whatever else bad. Please, hurry!
  76. jackie
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Can we get one in ny?? Preferably on long island, or the city?? Please?? =D <3 <3
  77. Trudy Mayor
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Hope some day to see one in Cleveland, Ohio. More and more people are demanding organic foods. Earthfare, and Whole Foods and Trader Joes are in the area. Now we need Amy's!
  78. april
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Would love to see an amys in erie pa
  79. caylee
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    bring it to Georgia! metro Atlanta would love this!
  80. Kendra
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Quick food when out and about and hungry and gluten intolerant has been nearly impossible. Add in my preference for cruelty free & non GMO food, and the options shrink dramatically. I usually try for a taco truck. Quality varies, but generally the corn tortillas are GF. Recently there has been a trend towards mixing flour into the (apparently) corn tortillas. Without safe tacos, my options dramatically decrease. Thank you, Amy's, for bucking the trend. Don't forget the Central Valley! Stockton would welcome you.
  81. ls.crusher
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    YES PLEASE!! I'm in Texas..& i've yet to find Amy's in the freezers here..but I've had Amy's before & my sister in Washington gets them regularly...I'll be excited when one gets built here..but in the meantime...can u send your frozen meals & soups my way!!!
  82. Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Please come to Kentucky. We need healthy food.
  83. marysa stenzel
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Announced Sept. 2014, General Mills bought Amy's.
  84. Sarah
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Please come to CT!!!
  85. peg
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    So happy to hear someone is stepping up to the (real food) plate!!!! Thank you so much. Hope I am still around when you expand to southwest Fl!!!!!.
  86. Jerold Glanville
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    While you have not yet come to my area, I applaud your efforts! I moved recently from the Calistoga area to an area renown for forward thinking, Ojai, Ca. Perhaps one day soon I may be able to enjoy benefits of your efforts. Than you for your forward thinking. Best of luck in your endeavors.
  87. Jennifer
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Thank you so much. I would be proud to work at Amy's in place of corporate America. I'm so excited to possibly have a great place to eat.
  88. Barbara
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Bring one to Rancho Cucamonga, California, please need one.
  89. Ann
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    Yess! Come to Michigan!
  90. Heather Manska
    Friday, May 29th, 2015
    I just want to thank Amy's kitchen for taking the initiative in this life changing project. I hope that it expands and eventually changes the entire fast food industry. I believe that fast food is the heart of Americas poor eating habits and if this begins to change, maybe the world my daughter grows up to live in will be a healthier place. You have many loyal customers (and employees) waiting for you in Montana! Great amounts of love and respect from me, my family and friends.
    THANK YOU!!!!!
    -Heather
  91. Tanya Rafajlovski
    Saturday, May 30th, 2015
    Any chance you will be opening one up in the Orlando area???
  92. Lisa Howard
    Saturday, May 30th, 2015
    I think this is Awsome!! Please come to Georgia
  93. Saturday, May 30th, 2015
    Great article, Leilani Clark!
    Bravo for Amy's Kitchen and its great products and enlightened philosophy and congratulations on your new venture of Amy's Drive Thru!

    I have been enjoying Amy's Kitchen's canned and frozen food since the company first started in 1987. As a vegetarian for nearly 20 years, I appreciate having the variety of options offered by Amy's Kitchen to choose from for a nutritious and delicious meal.

    It has been a delight watching the building progress at the new restaurant site; especially the old-fashioned looking water tower and the roof garden. It looks like attention to detail is a top priority at Amy's Drive Thru.

    "Better-for-you" choices are a sign of the times because as the saying goes, "You are what you eat."
  94. Saturday, May 30th, 2015
    P.S. to the person who commented that Amy's Kitchen sold to General Mills, that is a false statement. It was Annie's. Bummer, because I like Annie's products too.

    Here is a link to a Press Release to help clear things up:
    http://www.amys.com/images/uploads/files/pdf/Appr_Which_MacCheeseSold.pdf
  95. Alicia Uribe
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    Bring it to Tucson AZ. :)
  96. Sherry LeTellier
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    Bring Amy's Drive Thru our way, Please.

    Redondo Beach, California
  97. bonnie ulrich
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    I live in Bakersfield C.A. Please come here. I will spread e word and I;ld even work for you part time. Your great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  98. Donna Faulkner
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    Where in California are you opening?
    Address etc.?
    Thank you, Donna
  99. summer
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    I need an Amy's drive thru in Toronto please!
    Love the food! All of it. Good luck Amy!
  100. Benita Klein
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    I am so glad to learn about Amy's Drive Thru Restaurant which is opening in California! All I can say is, "It's about time!" I live in the DC area and would love to see another opening in our area. My son became a vegetarian over a year ago, and he hasn't tasted a bite of meat since, not even a small nibble! It has been baby steps for the rest of us but I see major changes in our meal planning and restaurant choices. I believe that is the key with this type of restaurant, baby steps, so we can save our beautiful, sweet, animal friends. Thank you for all the energy, trial and error, that went into getting this restaurant started. Wonderful!!!!!
  101. Joan
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    Long overdue! I am so excited to try this, wishing them good luck. I will be one of their first cystomers!!! :-)
  102. cory
    Sunday, May 31st, 2015
    Please bring one to southern California!!!
  103. Evelyn Avanti
    Monday, June 1st, 2015
    I'm confused. Will the food all be vegetarian? I thought so from this statement: "we decided to do more of a traditional drive-through restaurant, but with organic, vegetarian, pesticide-free, and GMO-free food." But then later in the article it says: "there are chicken nuggets [on our menu], but those chicken nuggets are made using really good birds" ??
    • Twilight Greenaway
      Monday, June 1st, 2015
      If you read closely, you'll see that's a quote about a restaurant called Loca'l.
  104. Gladys Brayer
    Monday, June 1st, 2015
    I am delighted to learn that Amy's Drive-thru will be located in Rohnert Park! Is it near the Walmart store
    there? If so, I know the location...(used to work there).
    I've bought some of Amy's frozen foods at my local
    markets in Ukiah, and my vegan son swears by them!
    I'm diabetic, and have often wondered why some dedicated dieticians haven't gotten together to open restaurants (leading to a chain)...which would provide
    healthy organic food to the public, as well as frozen
    selections...and it seems Amy's is doing just that!! And
    my BIG question has been..."and would it be asking too much for these foods to be both tasty and delicious"?
    through the use of herbs and spices...
    Based on your sales records and growing recognition, I'm sure Amy
  105. Gladys Brayer
    Monday, June 1st, 2015
    to continue...Amy's will be wildly successful!
    Thank you for providing a much needed resource for
    all who are looking for healthy alternatives to the poison-filled selections we find on our nation's grocery shelves!
    Your prices may be higher than others, but perhaps in time as your business expands, they could be reduced to be more assessable to families with hungry children with voracious appetites! (I've heard it often said that it's difficult to feed families organic foods because they cost more...even though they are better)...and grocery chains are now featuring organic food sections--thanks to businesses such as yours...Congratulations! I would love to hear from you...and help promote your business!
  106. Melissa Roberts
    Monday, June 1st, 2015
    You should come to Orlando Florida. You will not be sorry.
  107. Sharla B
    Monday, June 1st, 2015
    Please come to Portland Oregon - St.John's area. we are low on restaurants - I would love a GF option that I wont have drive across town for.
  108. John Spremich
    Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015
    I used to live next to Amy's plant in West Santa Rosa and bought many of their frozen food items. Please let me know when the fast food restaurant opens in Rohnert Park. It will be only 20-25 minutes away.
  109. Kellie Ann
    Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015
    OMG, I just ran across this site. This is amazing. i only wish we had one closer to where I live in Santa Barbara. I have so much trouble eating out, we go to any fast food and I just elect not to eat because I dont trust some high school kid cooking food and telling me its gf and they dont know. Its sad and I feel so helpless that I have to starve sometimes on the road. I usually pack all my own food, even going back home just to be safe. Amazing, great job Amy!
  110. Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015
    Wow...this is exciting...I pretty much live on Amy's frozen foods now. Of course, being all the way here in SC the chance of us seeing this here anytime soon..is remote to say the least. Wishing they company the best. Would love to see one here someday!!!!
  111. C. Watchorn
    Friday, June 5th, 2015
    PLEASE consider Fayetteville, Arkansas for one of your new organic restaurants.....PLEASE!
    We have a large population consuming organics with a new Natural Grocers and a Whole Foods, being built as I write and an all organic co-op.
    We're a college town in the Ozark Mtns. with many attributes for wholesome living, supporting organic farming (numerous private and communal farms) and our population goes back to the first hip movements of the 70's.
    Not only that but my freezer is full of your entrees' and pizza. Every grocer in town sells your food....even Wal-Mart. You'd be a total success here in Fayetteville and very much welcomed! Again, PLEASE consider our town.
    Best wishes on your new adventure! You will have GREAT success!
  112. Kathryn Mary
    Friday, June 5th, 2015
    with love to see this and Cincinnati Ohio – thanks for your work, Kathy
  113. Robert Silberman
    Friday, June 5th, 2015
    I am really excited about your entry in a Vegetarian fast food restaurant. I would be interested in being owning a franchise.

    Also would be interested in assisting in Franchise development.
  114. Friday, June 5th, 2015
    As a grandmother of 11 kids I love to see El Paso Texas in your list to install one of your restaurants here.
    There's a lot of people realy concern about GMO in their food and very compromise with organic food.
    Thank You
  115. Gary Shelby
    Friday, June 5th, 2015
    When would this restaurant arrive in the Abingdon, VA, area? Restaurants of this nature are needed and would be most popular nationwide.
  116. Chuck Faulkner
    Saturday, June 6th, 2015
    Thanks for caring about what types of food we put into our bodies! Have you ever experimented with frying in coconut oil? I know it's costly, but it has a very high flash point and doesn't burn. It is very possible that it will last longer and the cost could be justified! I use it a lot at home and love it. It gives foods a great taste and is very healthy! It might be worth it to experiment with this very healthy oil! Hope you do! Thanks Again Chuck Faulkner
  117. Sunday, June 7th, 2015
    We absolutely would support your Amy's location in the east valley of Arizona! Hopefully Chandler area haha
  118. Carol Sloan
    Sunday, June 7th, 2015
    You go Amys! It is about time we have an organic drive thru! I am so delighted! I now live in Sacramento so, will be waiting for the restaurant to come here.
  119. Susie Coker
    Sunday, June 7th, 2015
    I am thrilled. I can't wait for you to come to Southern Calif. (Oceanside to be exact). We're hungry for you. Buying nonGMO and Organic is a must. The health of our country depends on it. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. My personal favorite is Amy's frozen Tofu Scramble and I offen clear the shelves.
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