The Pita Pit, an Idaho-based quick-service restaurant franchise that caters to health-conscious consumers, is expanding in Central Pennsylvania.
Since September 2010, Lancaster County entrepreneurs Brad Alexander and Nathan Groff and their business partners have opened locations in Lancaster and Harrisburg.
In late May, the group plans to open a third location in Elizabethtown, with long-term plans of owning 10 to 15 locations in Dauphin, Lancaster and York counties, Alexander said. The Reading area also is a possibility, he said.
"We're looking for demographics where there are young professionals and people starting to become more focused on what they are putting into their bodies," Alexander said. "It's a convenience food, but it's also an excellent balance between timeliness and healthiness."
The brand caters to college students and the downtown business crowds. Pita Pit focuses on specializing pitas to order by giving guests the opportunity to choose from freshly grilled meats, vegetables and sauce options
The local franchise owners said they hope to open another four locations in the next two years. They have partnered with several Lancaster County firms on construction, including Fox Construction, Skywalker Electric and Light and Reliable Plumbing & Heating.
"The brand is really spreading worldwide," Alexander said. "It's reminiscent of Subway 15 or 20 years ago. There is a huge market (for this type of food)."
Founded in Canada in 1995, the chain began franchising in 1997, according to the company's website. Franchising in the United States began in 1999 and Pita Pit Inc. was formed.
In 2005, Pita Pit USA Inc. acquired Pita Pit Inc. The company has more than 300 locations in North America.