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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


Compliments of the Chef: Dining Portions, Prices

The FSA Meal Plan Resolution Committee is one of the many student-faculty groups at Stony Brook that depends on student feedback to improve the quality of the university. The Resolution Committee, which is in charge of dining services, is responsible for creating food varieties, portions and prices. Branching off from the Faculty-Student Association, the group keeps close ties with Campus Dining Services and is comprised of nine students and six faculty members.

“The point of this committee is to have faculty and students work together. Anything, questions, concerns, prices, go through us. Our goal is customer satisfaction for everyone,” said Chairwoman of the Committee, Melanie Luk .

The Meal Plan Committee is directly involved in choosing all new products that arrive on campus. Managers from various food companies advertise their selections to the group, and after tasting the product and reviewing the price range, they decide whether to accept it or not. The committee is responsible for the many innovations that have arrived on campus, such as Naked Juice and Kelly Dining’s Bubble Tea.

Luk explained that when deciding on a food serving size, the group considers the portions required for a healthy and balanced diet. Prices are directly related to the portions. Increased portion size will bring on greater prices. While fluctuations do occur in prices, they are based on a price-portion guide that lists the product, price and quantity of each item.

“Each semester we look through it and see where it?s not matching up or looks unreasonable, and we fix it,” Luk said. “We have decreased prices and we have increased prices. It’s all about balance. We have made adjustments to a lot of products, but people don’t see it.”

Also, SBU’s sponsor, Coca-Cola, mandates specific prices for its products. For other products, the Resolution Committee will go out to different stores, compare the prices and set them in similar ranges.

“The commuters have to pay with cash, but when you use your own ID card, the tax is deducted. Prices don’t just change everyday, only if it’s [unfair], we’d change it.” Luk explained. “For example, the hot dog toppings, they used to charge per topping. We thought that was unreasonable, so we changed it to 39 cents for as many toppings as you want.”

The committee relies primarily on student-response to create better products and to increase food quality. As a way to find student views, the group sends out Customer Advocates who spread throughout the campus and survey students on their preferences. The Advocates bring this information back to the group, which bases its decisions on these reactions.

Luk stated that the best way to increase SBU’s dining quality would be for students to come and participate in the group itself, since it has an open-door policy for anyone. The committee tries to increase involvement by publicizing itself in campus newspapers and promoting itself in L.E.G and R.A. sessions. It also holds weekly meetings Wednesdays at 1:00 pm during Campus Lifetime in the Kelly Conference Room.

“People don’t go out there and see what the school has to offer, and we’re trying. If you have any complaints, any suggestions, then bring it up at our meetings and we can talk about it. We, as a committee, try to solve any problems that come up, that’s what resolution means.”

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