Aramark responds to ASBSU condemnation with reparations for meal plans, partially meeting demands

Nearly three weeks after the Associated Students of Boise State University (ASBSU) voted to condemn Aramark due to a lack of dining options on campus, the university’s food service vendor has finally responded.

On Oct. 4, an email was sent by Jodi Hecimovich, a regional marketing director for Aramark, to ASBSU leadership. Attached to this email was the official response made by the company to ASBSU and, by extension, the student body.

To conclude, Aramark laid out what they have done specifically to alleviate the situation for students on meal plans. 

These include giving students a reusable to-go box, sending $100 in flex credit to student accounts, partnering with Crave Delivery, providing five additional meal equivalencies per week to students on a mandatory plan, allowing food trucks on campus to accept Flex Dollars and allowing for Poppy Seed Café and Tree City Juice and Smoothies to accept meal equivalencies. 

Aramark has also committed to donating $10,000 worth of food to the Campus Food Pantry for the fall semester.

The day this response came out also coincides with the official re-opening of the SouthFork Market, located in the Honors College Building.

It is also worth noting that Aramark has only fulfilled one of the three forms of damages that ASBSU had asked for within Resolution #1, that being, “Provide additional meal equivalencies that can be used at all retail locations. Basic 14 Meal Plan holders with five meal equivalencies.”

The other two demands included $25 additional flex dollars per week and a 50% refund to weekly meal plan holders for every week affected by closures or limited hours.

Aramark acknowledged the concerns made by ASBSU in regards to the lack of employment and closures of various dining services on campus. 

Aramark stated that they “understand that this has been a non-traditional start to the semester for meal plan holders given the supply chain challenges and labor shortages that are being experienced in all industries across the nation.”

The statement then went on to explain that Aramark “is working closely with its suppliers, leaning on constant communication, nimble decision making and flexible menus to keep up with our needs.”

Aramark cites data from the Idaho Department of Labor, showcasing the unemployment rate as of Sept. 21. Aramark claimed that, to combat the low employment rate for their on-campus dining, they have, “spent over 280 hours implementing efforts related to recruiting on campus and will continue our strong recruiting efforts to actively fill open positions.”

Photo by Mackenzie Hudson

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