In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.
Here’s your list for today:
1. DC hospitals hold vegan cooking contest
The District of Columbia Hospital Association (DCHA) Program Services Company recently hosted the third annual Healthy Hospital Initiative (HHI) Cooking Competition, a vegan cooking competition for DC hospitals in which the secret ingredient this year was carrots. MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital emerged as the overall winner and also scooped awards for best entrée with its Open-Faced Purple Carrots Ravioli; best dessert with Vegan Carrot Halwa Pistachio Trifle; and its chef Artis Crum receiving a taste & appearance award while the best side dish went to MedStar Georgetown University Hospital for its Carrot Cilantro Couscous Salad.
2. Michigan to have universal free school meals this fall
Michigan is set to become the fifth state in the nation to offer free breakfast and lunch to all students at public schools thanks to $160 million in the new state budget. The program, dubbed “Healthy School Meals for All,” covers free breakfast and lunch for students from Pre-K through 12th grade for the upcoming school year. The free meals are only budgeted for this year, so the fund will need to be replenished in the future to keep the program going.
3. Restaurant Associates workplace survey shows critical role of dining in return-to-office
Restaurant Associates commissioned a Global Eating from Work survey earlier this year, and the data extracted from speaking with 1,912 people revealed interesting trends in workplaces post-COVID, including finding that most businesses have remained flexible post-COVID, with a ‘more often than not’ presence in the office based on a 5-day working week. The three-day week has already trickled down into producing key trends for food and beverage, which has become a key-driver of bringing employees back into the office, as many employees are drawn to the social aspect of food and drink through the return to the office
4. Army base restaurant’s upgrade yields 600% traffic increase
The Hunter Army Airfield Warrior Restaurant near Savannah, Ga., has experienced a nearly 600% increase in diners following a full-scale renovation that created a more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing environment for customers and also included food trucks, “grab-n-go” kiosks, and made-to-order meal stations. “The Army plans to modernize all of its dining facilities with a college-campus dining concept, but we were chosen to pilot it, so for now, this is the only one of its kind,” said Sgt. 1st Class Gerrick C. Smith II, the Warrior Restaurant manager assigned to the 287th Quartermaster Company.
5. Baby Ruth comes to House That Ruth Built
Italian candy company Ferrero Group has unveiled a new partnership with the New York Yankees to bring its iconic Baby Ruth candy bar to Yankee Stadium—known as the “House That [Babe] Ruth Built,” at least in its original incarnation— through the end of the 2023 baseball season. As part of the collaboration with the Yankees and Legends Hospitality, the company that runs concessions and catering at the stadium, the candy bar will be available to fans at select locations around the ballpark and in luxury suites, and fans can also pick up a limited-edition Baby Ruth Milkshake made with chocolate ice cream, chocolate sprinkles, caramel drizzle, whipped cream and topped with a Baby Ruth bar at shake stands in Sections 112, 125 and 324.
Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]