The stan accounts trying to rescue discontinued foods

Across the internet, fans are fighting to bring back sandwiches and sodas lost to time.


July 20, 2020

2015 was a dark time for Panera die-hards. That year, the chain axed one its most beloved lunch staples — the chipotle chicken panini.

Fans were outraged. So they launched a website, Bring Back The Original Chipotle Chicken Panini, where they encouraged other Panera partisans to call customer support and demand the sandwich’s prompt return.

“Tears have been shed, glass ornaments have been shattered,” the homepage says, “and Panera has lost hundreds of dollars in revenue from just our team here.”

The wide world of snack revivalists

The chipotle chicken panini is far from alone: Campaigns to resurrect Pizzaria chips, Swiss-cheese-flavored Cheez-Its, and Taco Bell’s Bell Beefer have popped up across Facebook.

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One company, Canadian Candy Nostalgia, has turned it into a business — it’s buying up lapsed trademarks and recreating discontinued foods itself.

Don’t call them longshots 

Internet campaigns have brought French Toast Crunch, Crispy M&Ms, and Crystal Pepsi back to the shelves.

But the story isn’t quite as bright for the chipotle chicken panini. In 2016, Panera did relaunch a spinoff of the beloved sandwich — but this time the chain added avocado.

The Bring Back The Original Chipotle Chicken Panini site left a scathing review: “In conclusion,” it wrote, “the Chipotle Chicken Avocado Melt is disgusting.”

Does one of your favorite discontinued foods deserve a 2nd act? Tweet your faves to us at @TheHustle.

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