Nonprofit community cafe starts paying off for some
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Company executives say they are pleased to find that customers have been paying about 85 percent of the retail price of menu items since Richmond Heights, Mo.-based Panera Bread Co. turned the St. Louis Bread Co. cafe in May into its first nonprofit community cafe. The store is run through the company's charitable foundation.
Ron Shaich, Panera's executive chairman, admits that he was skeptical at first, too, unsure if people would pay when not required to. But four months into the experiment, he says the results have renewed his faith in humanity.