Fast Company

Willie Nelson Covers Coldplay, Assists Chipotle's Quest To End Factory Farms

In this charming music video from Chipotle, Willie sings about going "back to the start" of American farming, before animals were pumped with antibiotics and kept in factories.

A farmer, not content with his small family farm, starts to modernize. He turns his farm into a factory, pumping drugs into his pigs and pollutants into the water. But one night, he has a revelation: This is not what his life needs to be. He lets his animals roam free and raises them naturally (though still eats them).

That's the premise of the new music video commissioned by Chipotle, featuring Willie Nelson's cover of Coldplay's "The Scientist." The refrain--"I'm going back to the start"--is meant to evoke Chipotle's desire to take American farming to a healthier, more natural place. It's amazingly animated by Johnny Kelly.

It may ring a little false that an enormous fast food chain is trying to end factory farming, but Chipotle often puts its money where its mouth is. It buys more naturally raised meat than any other restaurant company in the country. And this summer, the company committed to using more than 10 million pounds of local produce in its restaurants.

Chipotle plans to show the video in 5,700 movie theaters around the country, and when you purchase the cover on iTunes, $.60 of your $.99 goes to the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation, which supports sustainable farming. And Coldplay, but forgive them for that.

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4 Comments

  • Todd Ontl

    Wow, you have a rather skewed definition of sustainable.  I would like to see one piece of evidence suggesting that factory farms are environmentally sustainable.  Furthermore, the only only way they are economically sustainable is due to the fact that the corporations that run them are not made to pay for  external costs to society, such as the pollution, that results.  But on the the bright side, at least you admit that they are not socially sustainable either. 

  • Anna-Lisa Giannini

    "A farmer, not content with his small family farm, starts to modernize.
    He turns his farm into a factory, pumping drugs into his pigs and
    pollutants into the water." A stretch. "Factory Farms" are sustainable. They are environmentally sustainable, economically sustainable and some day will be social sustainable as well. There are more people and less land. We have to feed the world.