A maggot was found in a piece of broccoli served at the Marketplace in Atherton Union. Photo courtesy of Keegan Sawin.
MARRIAH MCKILLOP | STAFF REPORTER | email@example.com
Marketplace Dining Hall, commonly known by many as “Atherton” or “A-town,” is a popular location on campus that many students on the university meal plan trust to be their main source of food each day. Unfortunately, this was not the case for first-year student, Keegan Sawin.
Keegan Sawin, psychology and pre-med major, spoke out on Twitter one evening after finding a maggot in her broccoli from the gluten-free station. Sawin posted, “@Atherton, THIS IS NOT OKAY”
— Keegan Sawin (@earthtokeegan) February 8, 2018
Sawin said Atherton employees handled the situation to the best of their ability after she notified them of the complication she had that evening.
“After finding it, I brought the broccoli [with the maggot] to the office in Atherton,” Sawin said. “The woman then took my plate and had all the broccoli thrown out.”
According to Christy White, general manager of Butler Dining, the food in ResCo, Atherton or C-Club is served in accordance with state-mandated procedures, such as temperatures the food must be stored and served at. When there is a food discrepancy in any Butler dining location, dining services makes sure to address the situation with precise measures.
“All of our food comes from approved vendors from across the country,” White says. “When there is an issue brought to our attention, we take a picture of it and send it out to the distributor directly so that an investigation can be done.”
Though Sawin is concerned with the complications of her dinner that night, she respects the work Atherton does each day for Butler students.
“I am so grateful for Atherton, it’s employees and all they do for us as a school community,” Sawin said. “I just think keeping a close eye out would be the best thing we as students can do.”
Maggots in the broccoli is not the only food issue coming out of Atherton. Sophia Demerdjian, first-year psychology major, found a bug in her soup last week in the vegan section, a location that she relies on to get all of her food because she tries to stick to a mainly vegan diet.
“This soup is one of the only decent vegan options in the dining hall, so it is disappointing that I no longer want to eat it,” Demerdjian said. “ I found the bug before I ate any of the soup, so when I went to take my first bite it was there. I was pretty appalled by this, and no longer had an appetite.”
Demerdjian finds it concerning students are required to purchase what she considers to be an expensive meal plan even though Atherton cannot guarantee the food will be suitable for consumption.
“I do not believe I get what I pay for,” Demerdjian said. “A meal plan that is so expensive should be providing healthy food options. I often eat very little in the dining hall, if anything at all, and I do not believe that I eat almost $4,000 worth of food per semester. If I did not have to pay for a meal plan, I absolutely would not.”
Corrine Simon, first-year criminology and psychology major, would not purchase a full-access meal plan next year if she did not have to.
“I do not understand why students are required to have the full-access meal plan for two years. Fairview has kitchens where I can prepare healthy food that I enjoy for myself,” Simon said. “I don’t believe students should be required to pay for something that isn’t prepared carefully. Even though I love their breakfast, I usually end up eating cereal for dinner because everything else does not look appetizing.”
Butler students also have concerns about the level of care put into food preparation. Alex Hardiek, first-year actuarial sciences major, recently had a mishap at C-Club when purchasing a sandwich.
“I opened up my sandwich, and luckily before I ate it, I noticed the paper was still on my turkey.” Hardiek says “I feel like there could be more done when it comes to the preparation of the food. I now have to be more cautious about the food I am eating from the dining halls.”
Butler Dining takes precautions when it comes to the food that is being served. By law, Butler Dining is audited quarterly, but dining services take audits further by hiring an outside company to delve further into inspection.
“We hire the company Ecshure to come in once a month to do audits,” White said. “They oversee things such as food standards and recipe standards. The audit is then reported to Aramark for accountability services.”
If students have an issue at all with Butler Dining, they are encouraged to reach out to Christy White at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Students should always reach out to me if they have a concern, I was only aware of the broccoli incident. If I don’t know the issue, there is no way I can fix it,” said White.
You can follow Marriah McKillop on Twitter @marriahmckillop.