Skip navigation

Growing Retail with a C-store Strategy

At UCSF Medical Center, Director of Nutrition Services Dan Henroid Is Employing Technology to Drive Efficiency and Customer Service.

A key UCSFMC strategy for managing traffic during the time the main café renovation disrupted regular cafeteria service was the creation of a small, hybrid convenience store adjacent to the main cafeteria.

Phase 1 of the renovation project involved the creation of Moffitt Café Express in a narrow, 575 sq.ft. space that was a former trash collection room in the hallway adjacent to the café.

Beginning as a small coffee/convenience item kiosk, it was reconstructed into an upscale facility and, after opening in late 2009, in its first year went form its former volume, $500,000, to $1.3 million. It served as a transitional service location during the renovation and now continues to handle additional lunch traffic and as a way to offer extended hours after the café closes.

Moffitt Café Express offers Peet's coffee, espresso drinks, baked goods, grab-and-go and retail-pack items. With barcodes on most products and cashless payment encouraged, it gives customers in a hurry a speedy checkout and remains hugely popular. As an additional time saver, the café offers menu ordering through its Food2Go program (, where customers pre-order and pre-pay.

In another move to address demand during the renovation, the department created a small (150 sq.ft.) additional c-store on the 9th floor. Named the 920 Express (after the storage room it displaced) this operation offered another service option and also continues to do well. While it was originally intended as only a temporary fix, it has been retained due to customer demand. It rang up about $120,000 last year and has an unusual advantage that Henroid hopes will increase its business in the future.

“It's directly above the kitchen, seven floors below, and shares a dumb waiter system with it,” he explains. “We won't have to use our congested service elevators to restock it.”

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.