Fourth Annual "The Best"

Fourth Annual "The Best"

Retail

Best retail addition we made this year
We added grab-and-go lunch outdoor kiosks at several high schools to capture the students who would stay out in the courtyard instead of coming to the lunchroom. Sales have been great!
—Jessica Shelly, food services director, Cincinnati Public Schools

Best commercial restaurant concept I’ve seen
Eataly in New York City.
—Robert Coffey, director of dining, Duke University, Durham, N.C.

A Friday’s restaurant really took an aggressive approach to wellness by shutting down its fountain drink soda machine.
—Alan Marcum, executive vice president of administration (Guckenheimer), Devon Energy, Oklahoma City

Best LTO promotion we’ve ever done
In an effort to promote wellness we allowed customers to replace protein or starch with a piece of fresh fruit.
—Pierre Sierralta, corporate supply chain manager, Baptist Heath South Florida, Miami

Gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches.
—Robert Coffey, director of dining, Duke University, Durham, N.C.

Best new revenue source we’ve discovered this year
We offer “school lunch” pizza parties to capture meals we would otherwise miss. We let students go through the lunch line for pizza with fruits, vegetables and milk choices. They can eat in their classroom or at a separate decorated table that has fun plates and napkins.
—Nancy Coughenour, manager of food service, Shawnee Mission School District, Overland Park, Kan.

Gift certificates for teachers’ lunches, especially around the holidays. This is a great source of revenue and is a convenient way for parents and faculty to give a practical present to a teacher. It also is excellent for attracting new customers, for those who have never come to the cafeteria.
—Ruth Arnold, operations manager, Nutri-Serve Food Management, New Jersey

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
granola bars

Where possible, we make grab-and-go items reimbursable. For example, if we’re serving a fruit and milk smoothie, we let students take a granola bar or other grain component to make it count as a meal.

Managing Your Business
pizza toppings

When the FoodService Director editors first started tossing around the idea of an “influencers” issue, our minds immediately turned to, well, foodservice directors. After all, so much of the learning in this industry is a peer-to-peer experience, and it’s your influence that inspires the content in every single issue of this magazine.

Then we imagined the massive infighting that would occur if we tried to whittle ourselves down to a list of just 20 influential operators and thought better of it. There’s already enough arguing for us to do about which pizza toppings are best (...

Ideas and Innovation
bolognese sauce

We’re trying to bring scratch cooking to all the elementary schools, but we’re taking it dish by dish. Right now, we satellite a lot of the dishes out. This month we made a Bolognese from scratch, and went to each of the schools to talk to them about the process and see if they could implement it. It helps us find out the hurdles and what they are going to need to make it work.

Ideas and Innovation
unsung heroes graphic

Febin Bellamy, a senior at Georgetown University, is the founder of Unsung Heroes, a nonprofit that features service workers on college campuses in man-on-the-street-style Facebook interviews. This year, Bellamy is working with a dozen schools to launch their own chapters of the storytelling platform. Here’s what he’s learned about staff shoutouts.

Q: Why did you decide to start Unsung Heroes?

A: One day I started a conversation with a custodial worker in the business school that I would see all the time. I learned that we had a lot of similarities; for instance, we both wanted to...

FSD Resources