BU has a new manager of Food Services, Nicholas Namespetra. Since taking over, Namespetra has been implementing changes based on consumer desires which has been getting recognition, including an article in the Brandon Sun. The Brandon Sun article was written in August and focused on the changes Namespetra was planning on implementing for the upcoming academic year. The article also discussed the survey that was sent to students, staff and faculty asking questions about what people wanted to see from the food hall. Healthier food? More grab and go? The survey also asked how often consumers used what was offered now, such as the soups or salad bar. In the Brandon Sun article, it was noted that students were asking for new choices, more vegan and vegetarian options and fresher food.
Namespetra sat down with me to answer a few questions I had about the surveys and changes he had implemented, as the Brandon Sun article was published before the academic year started. Since getting more surveys back Namespetra found that people were wanting international food options, fresh food, and items that were sustainably sourced. He also found there was a desire for more grab and go options. There is now BU Fresh which is a grad and go option with things like salads, wraps and sandwiches. Namespetra also found students wanting better quality coffee, so Equator coffee was brought in. Equator Coffee Roasters roast fair trade, organic coffee.
Namespetra can be found in the dining hall, talking to customers and asking them about their food experience, the taste of their food and any changes they would make to it. There was some boredom of the previous menu, so in the new menu there is more of a “build your own” concept, to be more flexible for customers. Food is made from scratch, not purchased pre-made and is of a higher quality when it is brought in pre-made. Namespetra is very eager to hear input on the changes being implemented in BU’s Food Hall and will make changes according to customer feedback.