Out with Aramark, in with Chartwells

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As the end of Portland State’s contract with the food service provider Aramark nears its June 30, 2017 completion, Chartwells prepares to take over. Silvia Cardullo/PSU Vanguard

As the end of Portland State’s contract with the food service provider Aramark nears its June 30, 2017 completion, Chartwells prepares to take over.

Chartwells Higher Education Dining Services, a New York-based food service management company, was recently awarded the contract to PSU’s dining services. These services, according to the press release, will be found in “University Housing Dining, Smith Memorial Student Union, Conferences and Events, Viking Pavilion, University Place Hotel and Conference Center and other campus dining locations.”

Chartwells was chosen over three other companies. Chartwells was determined the best fit to match “PSU’s desire for a company that will operate campus dining in creative new ways that appeal to a diverse student population, reflect Portland’s unique and special cultural and food environment, and align with PSU’s strategic plan and mission,” according to John Kirkland of PSU Communications. Additionally, Chartwells is expected to “provide support for scholarships for students, diversity awards and food pantry donations.”

The Chartwells website boasts an “eat, learn, live” philosophy which focuses not only on providing nutritional and tasty food, but also strives to teach lifelong positive nutritional habits. The company aims to achieve its goals by hiring quality chefs and dietitians, offering more fruits and vegetables, and offering vegetarian options, according to a video on the website.

“We are planting the seeds of health and wellness,​” the Chartwells website states.

Additionally, Chartwells claims to “champion local farmers and fair trade” as well as “promote locally grown produce.”

PSU students seemed open to the change of food vendors. For example, “[The school] had good options here, but I usually eat outside of here more often,” said James, a sophomore Business Marketing major. James also noted that the convenience of the dining made it easy to access.

Chanel Fraser, a junior Geology major agreed that the current dining options were “not the best of food,” but it was also a convenient location.

According to a press release by Campus Food Services Administrator, PSU,“Chartwells will bring new vendors to campus, including Salt and Straw, Cha Cha Cha, Smith Tea Maker, Stumptown Coffee and Roman Candle Baking.”

No service losses are anticipated with the new service provider. However, PSU’s pouring rights for Coca-Cola were terminated, and Chartwells is expected to provide Pepsi products in accordance with a new pouring rights contract with Pepsi.

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