Student at Whitworth have different tastes and preferences in food and what fits best with their lifestyle.
At Sodexo students can chose from a variety of food options. However, for vegetarians, sometimes the options seem limited.
Some vegetarian students and their friends think that there not enough vegetarian options.
Dan King, the operations manager of Sodexo, said there are many vegetarian options; you just have to think outside of the box.
For example, there are black bean burgers at the burger station or students can collect a plate of vegetables and ask for them to be sautéed.
He also says that it is “not usually hard to come up with vegetarian options” and that it is easy for him and his Sodexo staff to “pull out a station and create a vegetarian option for that station.”
This year, Sodexo has a labeling system for vegetarian, gluten-free and vegan options. These labels allow students with allergies or specific diets to clearly see what they can and cannot eat.
Also, a section of food in Global Connections is mostly vegetarian, and main entrées sometimes have vegetarian alternatives, such as pasta with marinara sauce instead of meat sauce.
According to the Sodexo food service chart over the past three weeks, there is about a 2-to-1 ratio of vegetarian options to only meat options.
Despite an increase of plant-based meal options over the past four years, some students do not think there is enough being done for vegetarians and vegans at Whitworth.
“There are not enough vegetarian options in Sodexo because most of the protein options are meat, and there are options like salad but then the only vegetarian protein is beans and that is not enough to get by,” said freshman Brittany Justham, a vegetarian.
The main protein source in Sodexo is meat; however, there are other protein options available such as tofu, dairy products, and nuts.
Whether or not Sodexo provides adequate vegetarian meals, some students perceive a lack of options.
Freshman Rachel Porche, who is not a vegetarian, said one of her vegetarian friends “only ate salad and donuts for a week,” because of the perceived lack of options.
It is not only the perceived lack of options but the seemingly predictable meals which have students feeling there needs to be a change in the vegetarian options offered to them.
John Marshall, a non-vegetarian senior, said the vegetarian options are “predictable” and there are “not enough.”
Vegetarian foods available daily in Sodexo include salads, fruit, vegetables, and yogurt with optional toppings.
To combat that predictability, King said students should not be afraid to ask for other options and for the staff to do something vegetarian specific with the available food.