By Alexandra Mondalek
August 31, 2016
Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images

Chipotle is like that ex who begs to take you out to dinner after you break up. And no matter how many times customers seem to be telling Chipotle “thanks but no thanks” for the offer, the once-beloved fast-casual dining spot keeps trying to win you back. This time, the plea to get back together comes in the form of free food for kids.

The burrito restaurant chain is now offering free kids’ meals to children 12 and under every Sunday in September with the purchase of another regular menu item. It’s the latest in a long string of gimmicky promotions to win patrons back. Just two days ago, the fast food burrito chain announced free drinks for students for a month. Before that, Chipotle spent much of March giving away 21 million coupons for free burritos.

What’s with all the free food? The restaurant is still recovering from the PR blow after a widespread E. Coli outbreaks in its restaurants last year, causing considerable damage to its reputation as a healthier fast-food alternative. Since, the 22-year-old restaurant has assured customers it’s doing all that it can to ensure food safety.

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But the free food giveaways can’t last forever. Sales plunged earlier this year and more losses are expected, so the chain needs to do something to bring back customers. At some point, though, Chipotle won’t be able to afford giving away so much free food. That said, if you’re up for giving Chipotle another chance, dining there in September will be cheaper than usual.

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