News

Highlights from the food proposals

Beloit Dining Service Presention/Photo by Beth Hanson

BETH HANSON, News Editor

Last week, Sodexo, Aramark, Beloit College Dining Services and Bon Appetit presented their Food Service Task Force (FSTF) proposals to the Beloit College community.

All companies promised to keep all current Beloit College Dining Services staff. They promised to meet, exceed or offer a comparable benefits packages. The details would have to be worked out during a negotiation period with the college.

None of the companies would set the prices of the meal plans; the college would continue to set meal plan prices.

All companies emphasized that their proposals are starting points.  Beloit College can choose to do more or less than what they propose.

SODEXO

Sodexo’s presentation focused on five different categories:  great spaces, exceptional food, convenience, engagement and food-learning.

Great Spaces:

• Comprehensive renovations in Chapin Hall and Pearsons Hall. Layout dining locations (Commons, DK’s, Java Joint and C-Haus), would be altered. Sodexo said they would do one project—probably Commons—by the fall. Other projects would be phased in.

Exceptional Food:

• Prepare food fresh, out front and provide a greater variety.

• Several food stations inside Commons, including: a 360° grill (a replacement for the Fresco Grille), Wild Mushroom (a vegetarian option), Flying Star (a diner option with breakfast all day), a full-entrée restaurant option, Bella (an Italian food option) and Ospretto (fresh-brewed coffee option).

• DK’s would also have a number of stations: Farmer’s Market (for salads, wraps and soups), Chef’s Table (authentic cuisines) and Simply ToGo (quick lane with a variety of sandwiches).

• In Java Joint, food offerings would expand to more paninis, sandwiches and salads.

• For catering, there would be five different levels of service and an interactive website.

Convenience:

• Construction of a “C-Store” in Chapin open from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Commons would be open continuously until 7 p.m. DK’s and Java Joint would be open until 8 p.m.

• Late-night dining at C-Haus from 10 p.m. to midnight.  On nights that C-Haus is not open, Commons would have late-night dining from 10 p.m. to midnight.• Retail transferability at all locations. Meal plans would be comparable to what they are now.

Engagement:

• Bring in an on-site manager chosen by the college.

• Expand student employment opportunities to include internships in:  sustainability, public relations, feeding the hungry and nutrition.

• A student board of directors to guide their food service decisions.

Food-Learning:

• Nutrition research.

• A student-run campus garden with a planting and harvesting program.

• A food network style platform where groups can cook.

• Campus kitchens run by students who volunteer to feed those in need.

• Sustainability “Better Tomorrow” plan with 14 sustainability commitments. There would be an online tool to determine sustainability performance.

ARAMARK

Aramark’s presentation focused on MarketView, food, retail, sustainability and people.

MarketView:

• First step is to send a market research team to evaluate campus on things such as how students feel about service and what they want to see.

Food:  

• Add Beloit Bucks, which would be used at DK’s, Java Joint and C-Haus instead of swipes.

• Continuous dining at Commons.

• Stations would include:  a homemade station, a grill station, a chef exhibitionist station and a deli station.

• Real food (defined as quality, freshness and variety) and bringing food out front.

• Eliminate preservatives and use local and organic.

• At least one vegan/vegetarian entrée option each meal.

• Provide resources for understanding nutrition, such as a visiting dietician and nutritionist.

• Keep holiday dinners, Apple Day, Kindergarten Day and exam treats.

Retail:

• Green café:  a convenience store with a coffee line. The green cafe would be as sustainable as possible.

• C-Haus would remain student-run. Proceeds would go to charitable organizations. Aramark would offer to train student managers.

• Catering: can range in type with tiered pricing.

Sustainability:

• Green consciousness: water filtration rather than bottled water.

• Leftover food would go to a local food pantry.

• Introduce RecycleMania, a program that encourages students to see how much they recycle and waste.

People:

• Training/development for all staff.

• Focus on safety.

• Student manager internship option.

BELOIT COLLEGE DINING SERVICES

Beloit College Dining Services’ mission is to entice, ensure and educate. They focused on spaces, “flexible, affordable and community” and a timeline.

Spaces:

• Commons would be open continuously from 7 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week with take-out options. Stations would include pizza-pasta (cooked to order), a deli, eatertainment (demonstration cooking), home-style stations, an international grill, soup and salad and a bakery. Vegan/vegetarian dining would be across the board. There would be a new seating arrangement and an expansion.

• A new floor plan for DK’s, including grab-and-go and cooking out front. Options include upscale sandwiches, dine-in and carry-out. There would be three cashier stations.

• Java Joint would become student-run. It would have fair trade coffees and become an upscale coffee shop with pastries and breads. There would be landscape upgrades of lighting and seating.

• C-Haus would remain student-run, with an expanded food operation and menu. Open 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

• Catering would have a dedicated manager. They would upgrade supplies and market services.

• Campus Farm: Campus garden extended into a campus farm, run and operated by students. Beloit College Dining Services would purchase produce from the farm. The farm would have a booth at the Farmer’s Market.

• Purchaser, Partner, Mentor:  Beloit College Dining Services would provide ongoing support for the co-ops. They would continue affiliations with student entrepreneurs.

Flexible, Affordable, Community:

• The meal plan would be unlimited dining with a range in dining dollars. The silver plan would have $100, Gold $150 and Platinum $200. Dining dollars would be used at DK’s, Java Joint and C-Haus instead of swipes.

• High quality, local and sustainable food.

• Nutrition:  Beloit College Dining Services would hire a nutritionist.  There would be a Commons Board of nutrition analysis covering all meals and menu items, which would also be available online. There would also be an internship in nutrition.

• Increased work study to include management roles, training and cross-training and become a job students want to have on campus. New Student Days would include an orientation program.

Timeline:

• Summer 2012 would mark groundbreaking of the campus farm. The new meal plans would be implemented. Positions including nutritionist, sous chef and student interns would be hired.

• New hours of operation begin in fall 2012. The garden would be harvested. A catering manager would be hired. Java Joint would begin transitioning to student-run.

• In spring 2013, Java Joint becomes student-run. An architect would be hired for DK’s renovation.

• In summer 2013, the garden would expand. DK’s would be renovated and C-Haus would be refreshed.

• In fall 2013, DK’s re-opens and Commons redesign plan begins.

• In 2014-2015, Commons would be renovated. The campus farm would sell produce at the Farmers Market.

BON APPETIT

Bon Appetit focused on sustainability, food and spaces in their presentation.

Sustainability:

• Emphasis on local and cultivating relationships with local farmers and businesses.

• Commitment to have at least 20 percent real food.

• Use sustainable seafood, reduction in the amount of products with antibiotics, humane treatment of animals and cage-free eggs.

• Focus on reducing waste and decreasing their carbon footprint.

• Buy foods seasonally and locally as much as possible.

• Open to student initiatives, such as starting student farms.

Food:

• Food is cooked from scratch in all locations.

• Meal plans would have more flexibility, with flex dollars added to all meal plans. DK’s, Java Joint and C-Haus would be retail locations to use the flex dollars in.

• Nutritional facts available for standard items. Since the menu is constantly changing, there will not be precise nutrition facts for every meal.

• Use all natural ingredients and make all products in-house, including salad dressings.

Spaces:

• Commons would be completely remodeled with more cooking out front and a pizza oven. There would be a comfort foods station, home foods station, deli bar (make your own), a bakery, a vegan/vegetarian station (as well as options throughout) and a gluten-free station.

• DK’s remodeled. There would be a salad/deli program, traditional grill and grab and go cases.

• Java Joint’s counter would be replaced. They would serve Alterra coffee (a Milwaukee vendor) served, smoothies and ice cream (from a local Madison vendor). Installation of an outdoor patio.

• C-Haus would continue to be student-run with a fixed kitchen and new equipment. Bon Appetit would partner with C-Haus on purchasing and food qualities, as well as provide menu ideas.

• Variety of catering options provided.

• Student work study would take place in all areas of food service. Bon Appetit views it as an educational process; they value student input.

• Plan to make changes to the facilities over the summer.

“Nothing is set in stone,” Dean of Students Christina Klawitter’98 said at one of the presentations. “Community input will be a big part of it. There’s a lot of work to be done on this.”

Student feedback is crucial to this process. An online feedback form will be available on the Terrarium early this week, if not today. Alternatively, all FSTF members (Klawitter, Professor of Biology Marion Fass, Assistant Editor and Web Content Manager Lynn Vollbrecht’06, Associate Controller Jody Nichols, Men’s Basketball and Golf Coach Brian Vraney, Associate Dean of Students and Director of Residential Life John Winkelmann, Professor of Philosophy and Hales Family Professor of Ethics Phil Shields, Clara Baker’13, Toby Walters’14 and Diana Gutierrez-Meza’13) are open to email feedback.

The FSTF will make a recommendation to President Bierman by mid-February. They hope to have a decision made and negotiated by April 15.

 

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