Panera Bread is Coming to Town

By Tracey Hall

There is a new restaurant coming to town! Along the Route 35 corridor in Wall, a Panera Bread is being built in the Acme Plaza. In recent years, this company has made an effort to serve healthier fare with their motto being: Food As It Should Be.
“We believe in raising, serving and eating food that is good and good for you”
This philosophy is evident by being completely upfront on the calorie counts of each product, including the amount of sugar in soft drinks. Whenever possible, they incorporate locally grown food into their menus and promote clean and nutritious meals.

Normally, I am not a fan of large food chains, but it does seem that Panera is making strides to feed America responsibly.
I was surprised to see a recipe page on the company website. Most have six or less ingredients and look pretty simple to make. There is a Wellness section for gluten free, sodium restricted, vegetarian and calorie conscious recipes.

According to the company news release, Panera Bread recently announced they will acquire Au Bon Pain Holding Co. The bakery-cafe chain will be part of Panera’s initiative to intensify growth in new real estate channels, including hospitals, universities, transportation centers, and urban areas.

Ron Shaich, Panera’s founder and CEO, and his late partner Louis Kane created Au Bon Pain Co. Inc. in 1981. It acquired Saint Louis Bread Company in 1993 and was renamed Panera. In 1999, Au Bon Pain was sold so all the company’s resources could be focused on Panera.
Jersey Shore Scene is a strong proponent of Shop Local, Eat Local. Of course a huge chain like Panera will do well here. So what are your thoughts on our new Panera? What do you like or dislike? Will you patronize the newest addition to the restaurant scene? Let us know!

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