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MAY 22, 2009 • ISSUE 36

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The campus greenhouse provides some of the organic vegetables

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Diners line up for the all-organic vegetarian offerings

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Students dining in Annapurna Dining Commons

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Diners at the Vishwa Shanti Café also run by Aladdin

MUM’s 100% Organic Food Service Inspires Industry Change

The MUM food service, which has been under the management of Aladdin Food Management Services since last summer, was featured earlier this year in Food Management Magazine. The article recognized that no other university can match MUM’s commitment to organic vegetarian dining.

Student favorites include Pizza, Mexican dishes and the salad bar. Students said that “the food tastes better than before and there is more variety,” and that “it’s healthy and makes me feel good.” One student said, “One of the reasons why I came here is because I wanted a vegetarian environment.”

According to University Vice-President Craig Pearson, Aladdin has been so inspired by what they have done at MUM with organic vegetarian food that they decided to make this their market niche.

Mr. Pearson said that Michael Bailey, who is CEO of The Trusthouse Services Group that owns Aladdin, and who is very prominent in the food service industry worldwide, made this decision after visiting campus last fall.

Aladdin is leveraging its experience with MUM to extend organic offerings at its other accounts. A pilot project launched in January introduced an organic component to salad bars and organic entree choices to a small number of the company’s other university and private school accounts.

Jim McKee, an Aladdin vice president, said that the pilot project rolled out with great success and that the students, faculty, and staff are excited to have this offering in a board meal program. “This modified program is probably two years ahead of the industry. I still maintain that MUM's 100 percent organic is 10 years ahead of where the rest of the world needs to be. It is the right thing to do, and I’m glad to be a part of it.”

Aladdin plans to roll out its modified program to its other accounts across the U.S. in the fall.

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