Food Services Updates
We are writing to provide some updates on the progress of our work with our food service provider, Chartwells-Compass, to enhance the food service through expanded options and a return to scratch cooking. At Trinity, we believe in the importance of supporting the whole person by providing authentic, healthy and ethically procured food to nourish the body, mind and conscience. Excellent food is a critical element in cultivating and supporting student health and wellness and ultimately, overall student success.
New Food Services Director
We are pleased to welcome new Food Services Director, Kevin Ribeiro, who joined us in December. Kevin joins us from his most recent role as the Residence Food Manager at Ryerson. There, he played an integral role in ensuring the success of the RUeats vision for students eating in the Ryerson dining halls, focusing on wholesome, scratch-cooked and sustainable, locally-sourced meals. Before this, he managed catering for St. Michael’s College (UofT), where he oversaw numerous high-end catering events. He also worked as Food Service Manager at George Brown College (Casa Loma Campus), where he honed his managerial skills. Kevin will play an integral role in Trinity’s food transformation as we continue our transition work with the Chartwells-Compass strategic management team over the coming months. Kevin can help you directly with accommodation of special dietary needs, or other concerns you may have, and you can reach him directly at Kevin.Ribeiro@compass-canada.com, and of course the Dean of Students’ Office can also provide support and guidance.
Now that he’s settled in, Kevin has begun to revitalize the Food Services social media presence and you can find regular updates and timely news, including online menus. We’ll be working with Kevin over the coming weeks to continue revitalizing the Food Services’ online presence.
Twitter handle: @trineats
Entering Strachan You may be wondering why we have moved the swipe station to the entrance of the servery. Beautiful Strachan Hall is a central meeting place and hub of activity throughout the day, especially since its recent multi-million dollar refurbishment: many commuting students have found the swipe station a barrier to accessing the hall, so moving it is intended to remove this barrier and make the space more welcoming to all. We are working with kitchen staff to expedite the line-up movement during peak periods and request your patience during this adjustment, as line-skipping will only drive up overall food costs. To facilitate late dinners on Wednesday and large-scale special dinners, we will revert to swiping in at the main entrance.
University of Toronto Food Services
Some of you may have heard that U of T will be changing the way their food services are run, to move further away from pre-packaged and processed foods, and toward more local and sustainable options. We fully support this approach and are well on that path at Trinity already.
Food Survey, December 2015
Many thanks to all who filled out the recent food survey, and congratulations our three $50 gift card draw winners: Steven Camit, Andrew Larter and Qasim Sheikh! We had about 300 respondents from all years, on and off residence and your feedback was invaluable for informing how we’re doing relative to the past, but also in helping us make decisions for immediate and future implementation. Many thanks, also, to the many students who have been providing feedback outside of the survey, and to the members of the student food advisory committee, who have been sampling food and providing feedback on a variety of aspects relating to food service.
One of Trinity’s strengths lies in the diversity of the student population and this extends to diversity of opinion as well. You may be surprised to know that your views about food may be exactly the opposite of those of some of your fellow students (!) As such, changes will typically be made based on overall trends in comments and ratings as we look to satisfy the majority of students, and we certainly saw some very clear trends. Changes will also be aligned with the overall direction of offering healthier options for you. Additionally, changes will take into account the seasonal availability of foods to maximize cost effectiveness, taste, nutrition and lower impact on the environment.
Here are some highlights of what we heard from you in the survey, and changes you can expect to see this term:
- An overwhelming number of you asked for more fish and less beef and less pork, so we will adjust the ratios to meet the growing interest in fish and seafood.
- An overwhelming number of you asked for more steamed vegetables while others asked for more roasted, boiled and grilled vegetables. Vegetables were very popular last term as we transitioned to using all fresh vegetables instead of frozen. Look for more of these great vegetables this term.
- We received clear and very positive feedback on the improvements we made this fall to the salad bar and the introduction of made-from-scratch dressings. As a result, we will continue with the current offerings and introduce additional options and some new made-from-scratch dressings.
- We heard many requests for certain items at the salad bar such as more frequent servings of darker greens like kale and spinach, more gluten-free grains, and more plant-based proteins like beans and lentils. Look for more of these products.
- We received many requests for more avocado and will be working to offer more avocado-inspired dishes
- Many of you said you would prefer to have the sandwich bar and pizzas less often. As such, we will add condiments to the salad bar so you can make sandwiches anytime you wish instead of on a designated day. We will continue to offer the sandwich bar, but less frequently. We will also look for alternatives to be served at the pizza station, in addition to the pizza.
- Many of you have asked for more clear ingredient information which we are addressing with our online system and signs in the servery.
- Following overwhelming support, we will be introducing a new infused water beverage station.
- This term we will also focus attention on making sauces in-house, from scratch, and will be gradually introducing more in-house baking, including gluten-free options.