FoodService Director | March 2011

Mobile Meals: FSD talked with five non-commercial operators to find out about their food trucks and other mobile meal options.

FSD of the Month

For some people, an expansion project can be a daunting task. But for Lisette Coston, director of nutrition and food service at the 912-bed Saint Francis Health System in Tulsa, Okla., it’s...

Research

When it comes to “hot” cuisines, Thai is still “the one,” according to respondents in our 2011 Menu Survey. But Thai’s got competition from two other cultures, and some interesting cuisines were mentioned by operators.

Steal this idea

We started a 2-4-6-Ate! parent meal tray program. A lot of parents don’t want to leave their kids to eat. We’ve always had a parent tray program, but a lot of parents were asking...
We held a Polynesian Pig Pickin' event. House-smoked whole-hog barbecue and traditional poi were the stars of the show. When students arrived, they were greeted by a Polynesian princess and...
We wanted to make sure that all the meals were made consistently across the district, so we made a book that has a photo and preparation instructions for every meal. This way the workers know exactly...
We held a Keep On Truckin’ event. Not only did we do regional foods but also foods from truck stops, diners and famous highway routes across America from earlier time periods. We also were...
Our district works in partnership with our county health department’s nutrition services. We have been able to provide the opportunity for students to go to the grocery store so they can...
To showcase blueberries as a fruit that is high in antioxidants, vitamin C and fiber, we held a Blueberry Blizzard event. We created blueberry baked goods, blueberry salads at lunch, and rosemary...
People ask us all the time how they can help with the program. They always want to give us recipes, but that doesn’t really work for us. So we tell them they can donate money for a salad...
We hosted a student art exhibit and tour of our warehouse facilities. The art represents each student’s vision of wellness, and the original artwork will be displayed permanently in the...
We held a Flavors of Africa dinner that was inspired by an event where a book inspired menu items. We served items such as Melkha (Algerian pastry stuffed with eggplant, feta cheese, black olives,...
We market our school breakfast program with magnets in buses. We ask the bus drivers to put the magnets in the front of the bus so that the students can see them all the way to school and all the way...
We had a mobile app for iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch created. The app is nutrition based and shows the nutritional content, food allergens, and vegan and vegetarian options at all our dining venues. We...
We held a Mindless Eating workshop alongside Healthy UNH on campus, an initiative to help our community be healthier. Once we planned the workshop, we actually presented the same program three...

Confessions

Cam Schauf, director of Campus Dining Services and Auxiliary Operations at 9,400-student University of Rochester in N.Y., gave grasshoppers a try, fears Bud Light and hates that he procrastinates.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
phone bed call sick

We make people call and directly talk to their boss or supervisor if they are reporting an absence for a shift. While it is more cumbersome, it is a conscious decision. We have adapted and implemented electronic methods to obtain efficiencies in just about every other functional area, except for electronic absence reporting systems. The direct supervisor can put more pressure on an employee to show up—especially those with some form of the “Super Bowl plague”—than any electronic system can.

Ideas and Innovation
tug hospital robot

Automation has opened up in recent years as foodservice operators across the country grapple with labor shortages. Robots deliver food trays to patients in hospitals, and they make sushi on college campuses. For some operators, they’re worthwhile to reduce strain on human employees and increase productivity.

Robots roamed the hallways when the University of California San Francisco Medical Center’s new Mission Bay campus opened last year. Though these robots have nicknames like Wall-E and Tuggie McFresh, they’re not a novelty. They’re a solution to a problem that administrators...

Ideas and Innovation
business card

We get the new folks abridged business cards saying, “Hi, my name is so-and-so and I work in nutrition department.” We thought it would give them more ownership of the program and elevate their status and position in the organization. It also gives our team more self-confidence and self-worth as an employee, which can be a challenge with foodservice workers.

Ideas and Innovation
usc asian remodel

With a prime location in Los Angeles, one of the nation’s foodie capitols, the University of Southern California has plenty of dining competition. So when Kris Klinger, assistant vice president of retail operations, discovered that students were heading off campus for sushi and noodle bowls, he knew it was time to take action. The construction of Fertitta Hall, part of the university’s Marshall School of Business, provided the opportunity.

Klinger and Gary Marschall, associate director of USC auxiliary services in hospitality, shared photos of both the new Fertitta Cafe and a...

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