The Big Idea 2012

Performance Dining, allergy software, customizable burgers and seven more big ideas.

Snapshots, Big Idea, Hospital Food Fight

Hospital Food Fight
Stillwaters Cancer Resource Center, Milwaukee

Two years ago, as a fundraiser, we created Hospital Food Fight. We invite the different medical systems in the area to donate money in exchange for their participation in the event, and we also personally reach out to chefs at the hospitals to encourage their participation. There are various sponsorship levels, but a $2,500 minimum donation will allow them to compete. The goal here is not only to raise money for our organization, which provides support for cancer patients and their families, but also to demonstrate that hospital food isn’t “hospital” food anymore.

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More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
chefs

We started inviting chefs and FSDs from other districts to come prepare lunch. Through featuring different chefs and chef-inspired meals, I’ve found the students have been looking forward to coming into the cafeteria. They are willing to try new things with crazy names, and to ask for their favorite outside items turned healthy.

Ideas and Innovation
tapas

I’ve created a high school “focus group” to see what future college students will want in terms of foodservice. This year, I called up two now-seniors from the last group to get 10 of their friends together. I also include a sophomore or two so that I always have a contact for next year. Tapas, grain bowls and late-night breakfast all originated from this group.

Ideas and Innovation
making meals

This summer, we teamed up with a church to deliver meals to three housing projects. We brought the meals to the church, and then the church recruited volunteers to deliver the meals to the children. We’ve been very impressed with this new model, and it shows great promise in getting meals to children who otherwise would not be able to leave their housing project.

Industry News & Opinion
sharing love

Having never personally experienced a hurricane, I can only imagine the horrors faced by the millions of people whose lives were affected by Harvey and Irma in late August and early September. It’s a group that comprises uncounted noncommercial operations, including Houston Independent School District, which serves 215,000 students.

But from that tragedy has come one of the most impressive feats of foodservice I’ve seen since coming on board at this magazine, partially spearheaded by Nutrition Officer Betti Wiggins , who only just joined the district. For the entire school year,...

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