Baylor gears up for reusable container push

Program will be relaunched in fall to increase student buy-in.

May 2—Students will continue to choose between paper or plastic next fall at Baylor University, in Waco, Texas, residential dining halls. Reusable plastic containers will be offered in fall 2013 despite students’ lack of interest in the program, said Brett Perlowski, director of dining services. Baylor Dining Services officials hope to create more interest in the program next year, he said.

“Our intent will be to try to rev it up again in the fall and give it another whirl,” Perlowski said. “It’s still a good program.”

Students seem to prefer the paper containers over the reusable to-go boxes, Perlowski said. The main issue with the reusable takeout containers is that people have to return the takeout boxes to the dining hall in order to get another container, he said. Students must rinse out the to-go box and bring it back to the dining hall. This could be inconvenient for some people. The dining halls then wash these plastic containers before they can be used again. Some campuses have drop off locations for the to-go containers that allow students to turn in their takeout boxes in areas besides the dining halls, he said. While nothing has been decided, this could be in the future for Baylor’s dining program, Perlowski said.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Maryland will begin offering weekly specials at all of its dining halls this semester, The Diamond Back reports.

The weekday specials will allow Dining Services to offer past menu items that students miss as well as new dishes students have been requesting, according to a spokesperson.

Students can find out which specials are being offered each week via dining hall table tents as well as through Dining Services’ social media. During select weeks, the specials may reflect a particular theme, such as Taste of the South.

Read the full story via...

Managing Your Business
hand chip card

Between menu planning, budgets and the other myriad concerns FSDs face, it’s easy to overlook the simple ID and/or cash cards issued to diners. But making the choice to upgrade technology can unlock the potential of these once-humble cards: They can be room keys, event tickets and, perhaps most importantly, a needed additional layer of security.

That’s the future of student IDs at the University of Notre Dame, which will switch from magnetic strip cards to chip-based ones in August 2017. “Traditionally, the ID cards have been used as point-of-entry access for dining operations,”...

Menu Development
salad chicken

Vegetables and grains have stepped into the spotlight, thanks to the “flipping the plate” trend, but protein is still an important part of a balanced diet. Sources including meat, cheese, nuts, and meat alternatives such as tofu and tempeh can and should still be on the plate—albeit as a side dish or topping rather than the main event.

“Whatever we do [as FSDs] needs to be rooted in the culture, and today’s culture is all about healthy eating and plant-focused meals,” says Chris Studtmann, executive chef at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. “A recipe is an idea; culture is...

Ideas and Innovation
hibachi grill cooking

We saw in 2016 that many operators were trying to have some type of display cooking in their food operation. We installed a hibachi grill this fall, and within three months we had 300 residents and guests make reservations. We also use our hibachi grill for cooking classes twice a month, where our hibachi chef Abby Kramer does an excellent job teaching different cuisines. We have received so many compliments that we have decided to get another hibachi grill for a different dining venue in 2017.

FSD Resources