Taco Bell To Stake Its Future On Doritos Locos Tacos

Taco Bell has been rolling out the Doritos Locos Taco over the past year. Now the company has reportedly declared that the taco — which does indeed have a Doritos-based shell — is a “breakthrough product designed to reinvent the taco,” and the company’s strategy for 2012 will be built around it.

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, Taco Bell CEO Greg Creed told investors that the company has suffered from a lack of new products, and that he sees 2012 as a chance to change that:

[Creed] maintained the year fell apart because Taco Bell did not have sufficient new-product news to win people back or entice more incremental visits from its customers. …

Creed outlined an aggressive game plan for 2012 built around what he referred to as a breakthrough product designed to reinvent the taco. That product has been revealed as the Doritos Locos Taco, which through a partnership with Frito-Lay was developed as a taco in a shell made from Nacho Cheese Doritos.

Other menu upgrades for the future include a Chef’s Signature lineup of upgraded tacos and other menu items, as well as the reformulation of several key ingredients, from the beans and pico de gallo to marinades and seasonings for proteins.

“There are 34 different bun types in the quick-service category and only one kind of taco shell,” Creed said. The company also plans to expand its breakfast menu to 800 locations.

Creed said that a lawsuit — later dropped — over the ingredients in its beef hurt the company in 2011, but that “we didn’t change our beef recipe or pay the plaintiff one penny.”

Taco Bell focuses on future with new taco [Nation’s Restaurant News]