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

Industry News & Opinion

Amherst-Pelham Regional School District in Amherst, Mass., is updating its lunch debt policy to no longer single out students, MassLive reports.

Under the new policy, students with lunch debt will be given the same meals as their peers, regardless of how much they owe. School officials will also be communicating directly with parents of students who have accumulated debt instead of through the students themselves.

The updated policy comes just before U.S. school districts will be required to publicly list their lunch debt policies, per new USDA requirements starting July 1...

Menu Development
eureka

Since California’s state motto is “Eureka!” it seems fitting that a recent conversation with the director of hospitality at San Diego’s Palomar Health led to the biggest aha moment I’ve had in a long time.

I called Jim Metzger in late April with the purpose of discussing Palomar’s recent commitment to the goal of making 60% of its total menu plant-based by this summer. It seemed a lofty number, and I was curious how the public health system planned to get there.

But my personal eureka didn’t come while we were talking about how Palomar had cleaned up the impulse-buy zones...

Industry News & Opinion

Labeling foods with indulgent buzzwords such as “sweet sizzlin’” and “crispy” can lead consumers to make healthier food choices , according to a recent study out of Stanford University .

In the fall 2016 study, researchers labeled vegetables in one of the school’s dining halls using terms from four categories: basic, healthy restrictive, healthy positive or indulgent.

The green beans, for example, were listed as “green beans” for basic, “light ‘n’ low-carb green beans and shallots” for healthy restrictive, “healthy energy boosting green beans and shallots” for healthy...

Ideas and Innovation
sparkling water

Our carbonated soft drink sales at Earls.67 reflect a national trend; we’re continually down on carbonated soft drink sales by 8% to 9% on an annual basis,” says Cameron Bogue, beverage director at the contemporary-casual chain Earls Kitchen + Bar.

The issue with spa water

Many operators are intrigued with the offering, but they are learning that infused water can’t be offered at a cost to guests unless there is added value beyond cut-up fruit. Bogue says, “I was adamant that I didn’t want to charge for spa water.”

Agua fresca alternatives

At the original location of

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FSD Resources