With Palomar’s contract with Aramark set to expire in 2022, the campus will not be seeing a change in its food provider for at least five years, despite mixed reception from students on the food choices on campus.
As the Primary Food Service Provider, Aramark negotiates the food services with Palomar’s Food Service Subcommittee. Considerations when deciding upon food services are quality, health, convenience, and value. Vegetarian options and food safety regarding allergens are also carefully considered, as well as what national brands to partner with, such as Subway.
The contract was vetted in 2012, offered with two five year terms. The first expired this year and was negotiated at the beginning of this year between The Food Service Subcommittee and Aramark. Negotiations were to accommodate for food services at the upcoming north and south satellite campuses, a broad Business Feasibility Study taking place later this year, and limited special event usage of food trucks by Palomar College Foundation.
According to Finance and Business Services Member Bernard Sena, the bidding process is composed of public solicitation for companies in the business. A range of companies are asked to participate in bidding for the agreement to provide food services to Palomar. The companies each submit a Request for Proposal (RFP) to the college to be evaluated.
Meetings are held twice a year, with one in the Spring semester and another in the Fall. The Associated Student Government chooses one representative to the meeting. Concerns that have been brought up in the meetings are food choices available, the selection of healthy options, and hours of operation of the food service facilities.
Current food options provided on campus are Subway, Bene Pizzeria, Grille Works, Greens To Go, Snack Shack, Comet Cafe, Java City, and Jamba Juice.
Students on campus have mixed opinions of the cu rrent food options. Carmen Torres, 20, wants to see more variety in the food provided, as current options are “too basic.” She also said that the lines can get long and her meals purchased on campus are on the pricey side.
“It’s expensive, my meals are like $9,” said Torres.
Contrarily, Student Walid Ammouri, 19, has no complaints about the food services and is satisfied with the prices and healthy choices provided on campus.
“It;s not bad, compared to high school food, it’s a lot better,” said Ammouri.
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