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U of C contracts new food provider, replaces Chartwells

By Fabian Mayer, March 19 2015 —

Changes are coming to the Dining Centre and other food providers on campus after the university announced last week that American company Aramark will be the new food service operator on campus. Chartwells currently provides those services and was the only other company to put in a bid.

The transition will take place in April and May after Chartwells’ 10-year contract with the university expires. Residence students who must buy a meal plan while living on campus will be most affected by the change.

Vice-president operations and finance Adam Swertz sat on the committee that selected the new food provider as a student representative.

“I’m personally really excited about it,” Swertz said. “Their focus tends to be a lot more on providing great Dining Centre food and that’s what their whole proposal centred around.”

SU science representative Keean Bexte has lived in residence during both of his years at the University of Calgary. He said he’s been frustrated with Chartwells’ service.

“They weren’t acting in a way that addresses students’ needs. They were acting in a way to maximize profit,” Bexte said.

He said there is a general distaste for Chartwells and the Dining Centre among students living in residence. Bexte said the Dining Centre run by Chartwells wasn’t something “students were happy to go to.”

Swertz was impressed by Aramark’s proposal and is optimistic that Dining Centre fare will improve.

“Aramark just wanted to focus on food. They were really interested in bringing quality food [to students],” Swertz said.

Bexte is confident Aramark can’t be worse than the previous food service operator.

“I think a step away from Chartwells is a step in the right direction,” Bexte said.

Chartwells declined to comment.

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