Starbucks is determined to become a threat to Chipotle, Five Guys, and Panera Bread

Starbucks lunch optionsStarbucks on FacebookStarbucks is adding sandwiches and salads to the menu.

Starbucks is determined to give the fast casual industry a run for its money.

The coffee giant has added several limited time offers this month geared toward lunch, according to DataEssential, a food industry research firm.

The new items include a “superfoods bistro box” featuring kale cakes and blueberries, prosciutto and mozzarella pinwheels, a BBQ beef brisket sandwich on sourdough bread, and a Santa Fe chicken flatbread.

Analysts at Deutsche Bank believe that more food offerings will drive sales at Starbucks.

Traditional fast food chains are losing market share to up-and-coming establishments like Chipotle, Five Guys, and Panera Bread as millennial customers search for healthier options.

But this shift in consumer mindsets puts Starbucks in a unique position to take over, according to a recent report by Goldman Sachs.

Starbucks brisket sandwichStarbucksStarbucks’ brisket sandwich.

“Starbucks is virtually the only large incumbent that can offer millennial parents the convenience of a (fast food chain) and food they would not feel guilty/embarrassed to feed to their kids,” Goldman Sachs’ analysts write.

With more than 20,000 locations around the world, Starbucks also has the size and power to compete with McDonald’s.

The fast food giant has more than 36,000 locations around the world. By comparison, Chipotle has 1,700.

Starbucks has been expanding its menu to include more food options such as sandwiches and salads. It has also added drive-thrus to many locations.

The coffee chain has also been “steadily expanding kid-friendly snack options, such as organic fruit squeezes, organic food snacks, and organic Greek yogurt,” according to Goldman Sachs.

Capturing millennials, defined by Goldman Sachs as anyone aged 15-35, and their children is key because they could become lifelong customers.

“With the continued expansion of the lunch platform and investments in both drive-thru and in-store throughput (Starbucks’) advantages in these areas appear set to expand,” the analysts write.

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