What's a bread bowl full of turkey chili worth to you?
At St. Louis Bread Co. restaurants, its retail price is $5.89. But if you can afford a few extra bucks, you can pay more to support those who can't.
And if you're down on your luck, you can pay what you can afford for the chili concoction in a sourdough bread bowl.
That new policy launched this week at all the St. Louis Bread Co. outlets in the St. Louis area, including the five locations in Chesterfield:
- 1650 Clarkson Road
- 14888 Clayton Road
- 17132 Chesterfield Airport Road
- 46 Four Seasons Shopping Center
- 238 Chesterfield Mall
Panera Bread calls the turkey chili its "meal of shared responsibility," an expansion of an experiment the chain started three years ago with one store that offered a "pay what you can afford" option. Now there are five "Panera Cares" cafes, offering menus with no set prices, just suggested donation amounts. One is in downtown Clayton.
The new rollout of the "meal of shared responsibility" will start strictly in the St. Louis area as a test before it's expanded elsewhere, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which quoted Ron Shaich, the company's co-chief executive.
"We never want to put the cart before the horse," Shaich told the newspaper. "So we want to see how this does, how it works, and how people respond."
In his statement, Shaich said the name of the meal is about "asking our communities to join together to share in the responsibility of paying it forward to help their neighbors."
In the statement, the company said it wanted to offer a meal that was "nutrient-dense, delicious and self-contained." The turkey chili provides 56 percent of the recommended daily value of fiber and 34 percent of the recommended daily value of protein.
The Frontenac Bread Co. store is one of 48 in the region now offering the meal at the "pay what you can afford" price.