19 May 2010

Non-Profit Panera

I thought this article in today's edition of USA Today was very interesting: Non-Profit Panera Cafe: Take what you need, pay what you can.

It would be interesting to see how this eventually works out.

Very briefly, the former CEO of Panera Cafe, Ron Shaich, "has converted a former Panera-owned restaurant in an urban area of St. Louis into a non-profit restaurant dubbed Saint Louis Bread Company Cares Cafe." The cafe serves the same menu as a standard Panera Bread Cafe but instead of facing a cash register at check-out, patrons face a donation box where they can leave the suggested price for their meal, leave more or eat without paying.

This past Sunday was the first Sunday that the free-will cafe was opened and revenues were up 20% over the previous week.

I hope that USA Today keeps us informed of what happens.


Allan R. Bevere said...


I read this story the other day. How cool is that!

Fat Prophet said...

I came across a cafe in Skegness in England about twenty years ago which only served drinks. You didn't have to pay for tea or coffee just give a donation.
They also had a praise time three morning a week which were very good and generally quite well attended.
The cafe was still there a last year when we went to Skegness for the day - it is called His Place and is run by an evangelist whose name is Harry Ramsden.

PamBG said...

Ian, I've heard of a number of "Christian Cafes" in the UK, although none that operated on the free-will payment system.

The cafe in the article isn't a Christian cafe (in case that wasn't clear).