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Problems at Panera Cares

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It looks like Portland isn't as "caring" as Panera Bread expected. According to a report in the Portland Tribune, the NE Hollywood Panera Cares cafe — which like two other cafes in the United States, functions under a "pay what you can" system — has not been as successful as the donation-based cafes in Detroit and St. Louis, recouping only about 60 percent of retail costs (compared to 80 percent in other cites). Panera chairman Ron Shaich says of the problem, "There's a palpable sense of people in pain attracted to our (Portland) store... We had to help them understand that this is a café of shared responsibility and not a handout. It can't serve as a shelter and we can't have community organizations sending everybody down." [Tribune via PF.org]

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