Investor to Olive Garden: Go easy with the breadsticks!
(Sept. 12, 2014) – The days of unlimited breadsticks could be coming to an end at Olive Garden.
That’s if one investor has its way.
Starboard Value LP is pressuring the casual Italian dining chain’s parent company, Darden Restaurants Inc., to make some changes, according to the Chicago Tribune.
One of those suggestions: back off on the breadsticks!
The investor said the chain is simply serving customers too many breadsticks, which is hurting its bottom line. Serving fewer would mean guests have more room for appetizers and desserts, bolstering the restaurant’s bottom line.
The suggestion was part of a 294-page filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Starboard said most servers violate Olive Garden’s policy of giving each person a breadstick and providing one extra per table.
Instead, servers give customers three breadsticks on average, Starboard said. That can lead to waste and breadsticks that aren’t eaten at an ideal temperature.