Nutritional home run

FSD says goodbye to coverage on sports venues, cruise ships and more.

FoodService Director magazine no longer typically reports on foodservice in such venues as sports stadiums and arena, amusement parks, cruise ships and state and national parks.

With limited resources, in terms of staff and magazine pages, it didn’t make sense to give space to what are really commercial restaurants operating in spaces contracted out to foodservice providers. The bottom line is, there is really little comparison between what a management company can do at a ball park or football stadium and what a foodservice staff at a 200-bed hospital does.

However, sometimes there occurs at one of these venues something so noteworthy that I can’t let it go unmentioned. Aramark did that last week when, at Coors Field in Denver, it opened what the company believes is the first concession stand to sell only gluten-free items.

The stand is located on the left field concourse and sells hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken sandwiches, chips, cookies, soda, water, and even Redbridge, a gluten-free beer. In making the choice to open the stand at Coors, it probably didn’t hurt that Aramark’s chef at this account, Rik Keissling, suffers from celiac disease.

Aramark has been active in promoting awareness of celiac disease for a while now. For example, the week before the gluten-free stand opened at Coors, The company hosted its second Celiac Awareness Night at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. Several groups involved with celiac disease attended the game and Aramark set up a special gluten-free concession area at the ballpark.

Aramark certainly isn’t alone in beginning to respond to the dietary needs of sufferers of gluten allergies. Other stadiums and arenas around the country offer some gluten-free foods. But the Philadelphia-based conglomerate certainly has taken the lead in this area, both in action and in promotion. A dedicated stand means that fans with celiac disease don’t have to wander the stadium hoping that the stand they visit will have foods they can eat.

In a market where most customers believe profits reign supreme—and it’s hard to argue the point when you see some of the menu prices in stadiums and arenas—it’s easy to simply consider the action to be sound business, nothing more. And obviously Aramark executives hope that such a move will help increase business.

Nevertheless, it is a step the company has taken willingly, not by force of law, and Aramark deserves the positive publicity it will receive from this action.

Keywords: 
new concepts

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
oversized portions

Here are the trends FSD's Chefs’ Council members wish would go away.

Kale Gluten-free Sriracha Chipotle Microgreens on everything Sous vide cooking Aversion to bread Healthy desserts Vegan diets Lies about local sourcing/organic food Fast food Cupcakes Pumpkin spice Fat-free or low-fat Meatless Mondays Bread cones Rigid child nutrition guidelines Bacon on everything Cajun Doughnuts with over-the-top toppings Oversized portions Fried foods Pinterest
Ideas and Innovation
Frose

Frose, sushi burgers and single-item restaurants are hot topics as of late, according to Forbes, which recently released a list of seven buzzwords in the foodservice world. Here’s what’s trending, in no particular order.

Blended burgers Frozecco and frose Goth food Hemp Single-item restaurants Sushi burger Upcycling
Industry News & Opinion
MeuDirections

One of my favorite cartoons shows a commander whose soldiers are in the midst of fighting a war with bows and arrows. Without turning around, he tells a man who has come up behind him, “I’m sorry, I’m too busy to talk to you.” The man was a rifle salesman.

In today’s time-pressed world, we are all too busy. So, it can be difficult to find time to reach out to others for ideas, solutions and best practices. But as that cartoon illustrates, it’s critical to being successful. The sharing of knowledge is a pillar of FoodService Director . Through our magazine and events, we have been...

Ideas and Innovation
chefs

We started inviting chefs and FSDs from other districts to come prepare lunch. Through featuring different chefs and chef-inspired meals, I’ve found the students have been looking forward to coming into the cafeteria. They are willing to try new things with crazy names, and to ask for their favorite outside items turned healthy.

FSD Resources