Community, News

What’s new in on-campus dining

_DSC7298.jpg

The Hecth-Stanford Dining Hall is located beside the freshman dorms as freshman are required to have a meal plan for their first year of college. Photo credit: Hunter Crenian

From nut-free dining to Kosher-friendly meal swipes, this school year marks the implementation of many new dining options for students and faculty with all dietary needs.

Meagan Clements, director of marketing and guest experience for UM Dining, said she believes that with a growing population of students with dietary restrictions and life-threatening allergies, reliable dining options on campus are a necessity.

Clements said that diet accommodation on campus is nothing new and has always been a priority.

“We are always looking for ways to make our dining options more inclusive,” she said. “We conduct surveys, focus groups, and just talk to our students.”

Clements said that over the past summer, the dining halls went 100% nut-free, which means that peanut butter and other nut products are no longer served.

Freshman Gabrielle Chapman, who is severely allergic to tree nuts, said she believes this change is crucial for students like her.

“I carry several EpiPens with me at all times,” said Chapman, a marine science major. “And the fear I have always had is no one around me may even know how to use them, but now I worry less.”

However, Clements said that proper accommodations have been made for all the peanut butter lovers as well: “Wowbutter,” a soy alternative to nut butters, is offered as a permanent solution for all peanut butter needs.

Accommodations for religious dietary needs have also been implemented. The Corner Deli and Pura Vida, which both offer Kosher-friendly options on campus, now take meal swipes as payment.

Clements also said that people at the dining halls are always willing to help, and recommends asking an associate if students are ever doubtful of the labels distinguishing vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options.

“One of my favorite things to tell students, especially incoming students, is that you have to ask the questions,” she said. “Our staff isn’t scary, we want to help you.”

Clements said that dining hall recipes come from a database of thousands and are altered in the kitchen to better fit plant-based and gluten-free diets. She said this is why the labeling of the Dine on Campus app and paper labels on food sometimes contradict: The paper labels can be updated, but the digital ingredient lists cannot.

Changes such as these are the result of the dining halls adapting to the changing food preferences of students, and their expectations of what they put on their plates.

Moreover, as a result of student surveys that indicated the desire for more food options from the Courtside Eatery, acai bowls were added to the menu at Fitberry in the Wellness Center.

“I plan on trying one of the acai bowls at Fitberry soon because acai is really expensive, but the bowls here are cheaper than the ones at the Farmer’s Market,” said Alexia Vignau, a sophomore microbiology major.

Along with increased food options, the dining experience has also become more sustainable, Clements said. The dining halls have switched to tree-free napkins, straws and to-go containers—all products of the company Emerald.

According to the company’s website, their products are made not out of paper but from bagasse, a part of the sugarcane plant, and are fully compostable. Fresh Fusion, Pollo Tropical and Panda Express now all use the compostable to-go containers.

For more information on dining services and events, all updates can be found online at dineoncampus.com/miami. If students have any complaints or questions, they can call (305) 376-7337.

October 1, 2018

Reporters

Sofia Mesa


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

It wasn’t long ago when the Miami Hurricanes’ Class of 2020 included the top three rising senior pro ...

The Atlantic Coast Conference Baseball Championship schedule is set. The No. 4 seed Miami Hurricanes ...

The first regular season of Gino DiMare’s head-coaching era ended Saturday at Mark Light Field. But ...

The Miami Hurricanes’ hopes for hosting an NCAA regional were damaged a bit on Friday night by a 12- ...

It took a long time for Dewan Hernandez to reach a point of acceptance for what happened to his juni ...

Imagine simulating diabetes, lung cancer, or heart disease on a device no larger than a credit card. ...

Alabama’s new abortion law puts the issue of women’s rights in the spotlight for the upcoming 2020 e ...

The University of Miami is shaping the future of education by using innovative approaches that drive ...

Six short films created by University of Miami film students will be screened in Los Angeles this we ...

Researchers from 16 Latin American and Caribbean countries, hosted by the Institute for the Advanced ...

Four Miami Hurricanes were among those recognized by the Atlantic Coast Conference Monday for their ...

The University of Miami track and field program garnered 20 entries in the 2019 NCAA East Preliminar ...

Miami's schedule features seven matches against teams that reached the NCAA Championship. ...

The Canes head to the ACC Baseball Championship ranked in the top 20 in every major poll. ...

Beatrice Mompremier of the Miami women's basketball team will once again represent her country ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.