Del Taco is changing its name.
The Lake Forest, Calif.-based Mexican fast-food chain is adding a new tagline to its name: Del Taco Fresh Mexican Grill.
The move is part of a series of changes the company is making to bolster its higher-quality positioning, building off moves it made to the menu that helped bring in consumers seeking better fare and led to a string of same-store sales increases.
“We’re further leaning into what enables this brand to continue to differentiate itself from Taco Bell and Chipotle,” Chief Marketing Officer Barry Westrum said in a statement. He noted the company’s value and traditional food preparation, as workers chop vegetables and grill meats all day.
In addition to the changed name, Del Taco has a new advertising campaign called “Celebrating the Hardest Working Hands in Fast Food” to highlight that food preparation.
The company is adding chalkboards to its restaurants to show where its produce is sourced from and when it’s picked.
Del Taco has new packaging with a more contemporary design. The company has hospitality initiatives that include calling customers by name after workers introduce themselves.
The 560-unit chain has redesigned menu boards, added new equipment to improve the quality of its quesadillas and changed employee uniforms.
The changes, many of which are subtle, come as Del Taco has successfully improved its quality positioning with higher-end products, such as larger “Epic” burritos and plated meals called Platos.
The changes provided a significant boost to a chain long known for its value menu. Same-store sales have risen for 18 straight quarters and traffic at company locations has increased for five straight years.
And, while the company is making these changes, it is still working to improve its value. The company introduced a new $1 Chicken Quesadilla Snacker.
The snacker “is a perfect example of our barbell menu strategy,” Westrum said. “It’s a Del Taco differentiator and an attribute we’re fully leveraging, while empowering our team members to deliver a service experience that is on par with leading fast-casual concepts.”