Cuisine 'Smashing' & Other Lessons from MenuDirections Day 2

A full day of education sessions and sampling yields some aha moments

Peter Romeo, Director of Digital Content

--One of the advantages of Mediterranean food for a high-volume feeding operation is its serving temperature and long hold times. “Most things are served ambient or chilled, or right from the grill,” noted chef Marion Gibson. So it can be easily offered in a weigh-and-pay set-up like a salad bar, or in a pick-three, fill-your-plate format.

--Breakfast, a source of sales growth for many foodservice operators, will likely morph into multiple feeding occasions as millennials age. Gibson said her company, Aramark-owned Lifeworks, has already identified three sub-dayparts that address the youngster’s consumption habits.

There’s early morning quick-snacking, where the harried young adults grab something on the run; the traditional, more leisurely traditional breakfast; and a mid-morning larger snack, where the eater has been on the job for awhile and wants to take a break.

--Google tries to put enough food options within its offices to have employees no farther than 500 feet from something to munch.

--If your food is cute, like a baby carrot or a smaller celery ticket, “you can get more money for it,” Gibson noted during her MenuDirections session on Mediterranean small plates.

--Beans, contrary to their bad rap, decrease rather than foster gas. “That’s been proven,” reported Erik Henry of Bush Brothers, a major bean supplier.

--Coca-Cola owns a coconut water company; PepsiCo owns a coconut water company; and, perhaps most intriguing of all, Madonna owns a coconut water company. There was no assessment offered of Lady Gaga’s interest in the product, which is currently soaring in popularity.

--There’s no scientific reason for physician’s relative silence on the health benefits of eating psyllium seeds and oat bran, according to celebrated nutrition expert James Painter, MenuDirections’ keynote speaker. The data proves that those forms of fiber could have a significant effect on well-being.

By Peter Romeo, Director of Digital Content
View More Articles By Peter Romeo

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Just over 100 foodservice workers at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., have voted to join a branch of the Service Employees International Union, KIMT reports.

SEIU Healthcare Minnesota said that 89% of the ballots cast during last week’s election were in favor of unionizing.

The workers are employed by Sodexo, Mayo Clinic’s current foodservice vendor. The clinic recently announced plans to switch vendors to Morrison Healthcare Food Services, a move that has sparked backlash from workers and led to a lawsuit from the SEIU .

Read the full story via .

Sponsored Content
pasta dish from NC State

From Barilla.

Good-for-you food doesn’t do much good if it’s a hard sell to get diners to eat it. Luckily, pasta is nearly always a crowd-pleaser, especially with student athletes who benefit from its nutritional boost.

“One thing about pasta is that students like it,” says Lisa Eberhart, a registered dietician and director of nutrition and wellness for North Carolina State University, where they serve Barilla pasta. “It’s also a great source of slow-burning carbohydrates.”

In fact, 57% of Gen Z consumers and 58% of millennials call pasta a “preferred food,”...

Industry News & Opinion

The Los Angeles Unified School District has lifted its ban on flavored milk in an effort to reduce food waste, the Los Angeles Times reports.

After implementing the ban in 2011, the district noticed that many students would simply throw away their unused milk containers, causing them to end up in landfills. In order to combat the problem, the district’s board is launching a four-part study in 21 schools that will examine different ways to encourage kids to drink more plain milk.

One of the theories proposed is that students will be more likely to drink plain milk if they...

Industry News & Opinion

As Harvard University’s dining staff strike continues , the school has added an extra $25 to student accounts, providing more flexibility for students to eat outside of the dining halls, The Harvard Crimson reports.

The extra funds were added to Crimson Cash and BoardPlus accounts, which students can use to pay for food both on and off campus.

Aside from some technical issues with payment processing, students are grateful for the extra money, according to The Harvard Crimson.

Since the strike began two weeks ago, students have complained about food quality in the...

FSD Resources