As another academic year comes to an end, Pacific University may be waving goodbye to the P.O.D. and other dining facilities due to a change in dining services.
It has been decided that Pacific will switch dining service deals with current company Aramark, over to Bon Appetit. The change will affect the whole university centre, from the dining area, to the P.O.D. and Starbucks.
This seems to be a long time coming for Pacific, as students have been feeling underwhelmed by recent food choices — with some even even choosing to live off campus and not purchase a meal plan because of the poor service.
Pacific’s current dining service provider, Aramark, has been running for over 80 years. They cater to schools, hospitals and conferences. Aramark claims to focus on giving students balanced options and healthy menus featuring authentic global cuisines, locally sourced ingredients, and plenty of variety.
However, Aramark’s services may be to blame for so many students choosing to not purchase a meal plan. One student in the University Center referred to Aramark’s services as “prison food.”
Bon Appetit is an on-site restaurant company offering food-service management to big corporations. The company is based in California but operate in 33 states. The company claims their food is cooked from scratch, and believes in using eco-friendly sourcing, local purchasing, humanely raised meat and eggs, and farmworkers’ rights.
Bon Appetit believes in sustainable eating. They are the first in their industry to switch to innovative sourcing such as sustainable seafood. Unlike other companies, they address food’s role in climate change and the issue of farmworkers’ rights. Their chefs must follow policies including no farmed salmon, no trans fats and no MSG.
When it comes to vegetarian and vegan options, Grove dining can seem quite lackluster. This may not be the case with Bon Appetit, as they advertise conducting “vegan culinary boot camps” across the country to train their chefs and stray away from corporate recipes to feed the masses.
It is not clear yet if the P.O.D. will remain and staff members have not yet been told if the store will still be here by the next academic year. With the departure of Aramark, losing the P.O.D. seems likely, although Bon Appetit has assured students Starbucks will continue as a mainstay.