By A.E. Sarver @GG_Sarver
Sodexo has worked to improve the quality of meals by hiring employees, adding new food options and making advancements to reach students’ technologically-minded generation.
The new deli bar has been booming with business and was made so that “it could be more convenient” said Tanya Carter, administrative assistant of Sodexo. With more bread and vegetable options and the opportunity to have sandwiches toasted, the deli bar is popular among students.
“I really like the food quality. I love the deli,” junior Jessica Palm said.
Last year, Sodexo did not have a chef, but this year they hired Executive Chef Stephen Goehl , as well as Production Manager James Wurst. Jeff Hilligoss, general manager of Sodexo, explained that they want their employees to take “pride and ownership” in what they are doing so that they will love what they do.
“It’s stressful at times, but it’s worth it,” Carter said, when asked about her job.
Sodexo also revised the 4-week menu cycle and added newer recipes. There are now more options at the stir-fry station, toppings for ice cream and a regular pasta bake every day.
Sodexo has provided a hot dog cart and ice cream cart in the quad. There is also a farmer’s market with produce provided by Midwest Foods.
Julio Dasilva, the new retail manager said that he hot dog cart will be our every Tuesday and Thursday from 11:30 – 1:30. Hot dogs are $2.50 and Haagen Dazs ice cream will also be for sale. Both cash and Tiger Dollars are accepted.
“We’ll be out here every week unless it’s snowing,” Dasilva said.
The Farmer’s Market has produce provided by Midwest Foods. Steve Zatarski, sales consultant for Midwest Foods explained that they are a vendor to Sodexo. They bring food that is organic or locally grown until the weather gets cold.
“[It] turned out better than imagined,” Claudia Berhanu, Sodexo Assistant General Manager said.
Hilligoss wants Sodexo to reach the students where they are. He said that they are trying to take the students’ suggestions to make meal times what students want. If the students were not here, Sodexo would not be here either, he said.
By having a Facebook page, Twitter and a mobile app (sodexo@onu), Sodexo welcomes student’s input. Not only are they making more efforts to hear the students, they also have six students that serve as Sodexo’s marketing interns.
“We try to be proactive. We really work hard at being innovative,” Hilligoss said.
But do students find these changes effective? Some students appreciate the updates, while others are still discontented with the food service.
“At first I didn’t like it, now it just gives me stomach aches,” freshman Sarah Zylstra said.
Other students agree with Zylstra.
“I think the food tastes good, but it kind of makes you sick. But I like the Sodexo workers; they’re very nice,” freshman Haley Peterson said.