On 2 January, 2018, the RUG will stop serving its own food and drinks at the cafeterias, giving the job to an external catering company: Beijk Catering from Leek. This means there will be some changes, says Beijk’s Elizabeth Germs.
‘We’re really going for a wow effect’, she says. The Food & Drinks locations will be restyled, and daily specials will be served by the chef, who will prepare your soup, salad, sandwich or warm meal as you watch.
Another change is that you’ll be able to buy coffee, tea, and juice from Illy, and you can make your own Asian meals with noodles or rice and a topping of your choice at the Yam Yam to Go stands. The courtyard of the Kapteynborg will be turned into a food court, which will have recycled furniture and an open stage for live music.
While it sounds exciting, it also sounds expensive. But students and staff will not have to pay substantially more for their food, says Liesbeth the Jong with the RUG’s services department: ‘We know that especially students are frugal, so the prices will stay much the same.’
Reason for outsourcing the catering is the changing needs of RUG students and staff, says De Jong. ‘The current catering just didn’t suffice.’ The services department did some research and realised that sustainability and healthy food were becoming increasingly important to people. ‘In the current situation, we were unable to meet these new standards.’
Several catering companies tendered for a contract. The university tested them when it came to internationalisation, customer satisfaction, health & vitality, and sustainability & the environment. In the end, Beijk Catering from Leek won the race. ‘We’re very happy’, says Elizabeth Germs.
The twenty-five people working in the Food & Drinks department will stay with the RUG and seconded to Beijk, the services department says. ‘In terms of labour laws nothing will change for them. Many employees are enthusiastic and think of it as a challenge. Beijk is a real catering company, which means they’ll have the chance for growth, says Liesbeth de Jong.
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