Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc has sought a trademark for the name "Better Burger", suggesting that the burrito chain is looking to open a new restaurant format for hamburgers.

Chipotle, which also owns ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen fast-casual restaurants and Pizzeria Locale pizza chain, filed the application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on March 11.

Bloomberg first reported the news on Wednesday.

Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold confirmed that the company had filed for the trademark.

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"We have two non-Chipotle growth seeds open now — ShopHouse and Pizzeria Locale — and have noted before that the Chipotle model could be applied to a wide variety of foods," he said in an email.

Chipotle is expected to post its first quarterly loss since going public after sales at its restaurants plunged following norovirus and E.coli outbreaks at some of its outlets.