Senate Bill 120 vetoed
Students are becoming more concerned about their health and what they are eating.
The Wellness Challenge that launched earlier this year at Fresno State helps students recognize healthier choice of a meal. There are visible Wellness Challenge recommendations on Subwayâ€™s menu in the University Student Union food court, for just one example.
But what happens when students step off campus for something to eat? How will they know how healthy that burger with fries will be? That was the purpose of Senate Bill (SB) 120, which was vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last month.
The bill would have required each chain restaurant in the state to provide simple nutritional information on their menus and menu boards. Nutritional facts might include the total number of calories per item, grams of saturated fat, grams of Trans fat and milligrams of sodium.
Some restaurants, such as Jack in the Box on Chestnut and Shaw avenues and Taco Bell on Cedar and Shaw avenues, already have nutritional facts brochures available. Wendyâ€™s, also on Shaw and Cedar avenues, does not have any such fact sheets available.
Graduate student Nissan Thao is a manager at a major fast food restaurant. He said he has nutritional guides available at his restaurant.
â€œYou can also find [nutritional] facts online,â€ Thao said.
According to the Sacramento Bee, in a public poll earlier this year, 84 percent of registered voters were in favor of nutritional menu labeling.
Schwarzenegger has led the state in support of eliminating soda and junk food businesses from schools. In vetoing the bill, the governor argued that it would be too much of a regulatory burdon for restaurants, and that many nutritional facts are already available upon request or on the restaurantsâ€™ Web sites.
Itâ€™s almost a trend to be carrying a Starbucks cup in your hand. But Stephanie Lasher, a graduate student, drinks her coffee because she likes the taste.
Lasher has been drinking coffee since she started college.
â€œI like the caffeine and it keeps me up,â€ she said.
Lasher also gets her coffee from 7-11 and The Bucket. Luckily for her and other coffee drinkers, Fresno State has several locations on campus where coffee is sold.
Planet Java can be found in the Kremen Educational Building on the bottom floor. They have decaf, house and espresso coffee. They also sell mochas, lattes and cappuccinos for about two dollars each for a cup as big as 21 ounces. Vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon and almond are only few of the many flavors there.
Sandwiches, fruits, muffins and cookies are also available for purchase.
Plant Java can also be found in the Leon S. Peters Building.
The Bucket has several different flavors of coffees: Guatemalan, Costa Rican, Columbian, west dark roast and hazelnut. For a regular size, itâ€™ll cost you a $1.35, and a large will cost $1.55.
â€œThe price you see on the menu board is the price you pay, except for [alcoholic beverages],â€ said an associate.
The same goes for the snack stands in front of the Science II Building and in the Student Satellite Union.
The Student Satellite Unionâ€™s snack bar is opened 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. So if youâ€™re an early bird or a late lunch taker, theyâ€™ll be open and ready to serve you coffee or sandwiches.
They have Starbucks coffee, hot and iced drinks available too.
The Coffee Spot, in the University Student, also carries Starbucks coffee. That way, you wonâ€™t need to cross the street and go to the real Starbucks to be part of a waking trend.
Subway, Round Table Pizza and Taco Bell are just a few of the food businesses Fresno State has contracts with. These internationally recognized restaurants are part of Fresno Stateâ€™s food services.
Fresno State has had the longest contract with Subway.
â€œThe terms and length of the contracts vary, depending on the restaurant,â€ said David Binkle, director of University Dining Services. Binkle has been director since July of 2006.
Binkle said that the contracts contain many aspects. Again, depending on the restaurant, terms must be fulfilled by both parties. Prices and performances are just examples of what both Fresno State and the food business agree on.
These food contracts donâ€™t necessarily cost. The structure of the arrangement is that each party receives a certain percentage of sales and also gives rights to advertise for each other. Health codes must be met, also.
The latest additions to Fresno Stateâ€™s food services are Chick-fil-A and Juice It Up, which are five-year contracts.
The Auxiliary Association is in charge of signing contracts. Fresno State also has contracts with Panda Express and Pepsi.
Itâ€™s been a long day.
You still have a two-hour and fifty-minute class to attend and you are hungry.
Fortunately, thereâ€™s still thirty minutes until your next class. There are also at least five restaurants just steps away from you on campus. You decide to order a salad from one of the restaurants.
With the way things have been going already, yourâ€™e not surprised that thereâ€™s an overripe tomato and dead lettuce in your salad.
Without any hesitation, some customers will let employees know about their situation and ask for a replacement. Others might throw the rotten food out and continue to eat the rest. Some might even just toss their dinner away.
Whatever the situation, Sheng Khang feels that the customers should not feel obligated to eat their food. As manager at Fresno Stateâ€™s Panda Express, Khang has helped many customers.
Khang uses LAST as a method of resolving complaints that any customer might have.
â€œWe listen to the customer, apologize, satisfy them and thank them,â€ Khang said.
LAST is Khangâ€™s own policy and teaches her many employees the same method to satisfy their customers.
Claudia Jasso is a cashier at the University Student Union (USU) food court; she tries to bring customers back with a smile and helping hand.
â€œ[Your customers] are your guests. You always have to help them. You canâ€™t argue with them, even if theyâ€™re not right,â€ Jasso said, who has been working at the USU food court for only two weeks, but still believes in great customer service.
Some restaurants have a supervisor on site to help with customer complaints. Employees donâ€™t always have the authority to decide on how to solve a problem.
Thatâ€™s where William Miller comes in.
Miller is a supervisor at Chick-fil-A. He likes to take care of the customer on the spot.
â€œIâ€™ll offer them something else or give them their money back,â€ Miller said.
There are other choices other restaurants on campus offer. No matter the situation, there are trained employees or just normal people who understand.
Donâ€™t let a rotten tomato ruin your already-long day.