The Big Idea: Hosting Healthy Meetings

NC State encourages customers to host health-conscious meetings.

We recently went through our catering menu and looked at it in terms of health and allergens. We are always getting questions from customers about allergens or what items are gluten free on the catering menu. So we made an allergen-focused catering menu. 

Lisa Eberhart, R.D

Executive Dietitian

North Carolina State University, Raleigh, N.C.

We recently went through our catering menu and looked at it in terms of health and allergens. We are always getting questions from customers about allergens or what items are gluten free on the catering menu. So we made an allergen-focused catering menu. Each of our catering event coordinators has a catering menu that marks items in terms of their allergens, so they can say to a customer, ‘If you get this buffet, here are the options for a person with this allergy.’

At the same time we sent our coordinators a package with healthy menu suggestions because customers often say they want to host a healthy meeting. We offer healthy breakfast and lunch suggestions. We also send suggestions on activities like early-morning walks before meetings or we send them signs that go on the staircases that tell attendees how many calories they would burn if they took the stairs. We just want to try to get people to have a healthier meeting and to think about smaller portions. It’s kind of a new thing. We also send e-minders out to faculty and staff telling them about healthy meetings and things they can do to make their meetings healthier.  

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veggie shaker container

We have kitchens without backflow preventers or potable water to wash greens, so we set up a salad shaker bar with precut, prewashed produce. The cups are filled with lettuce, and students can add their choice of toppings and dressings in the top and shake it up. It’s really cool to see them excited about vegetables.

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