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Is Sodexo doing enough?

Photo courtesy of www.qpkdesign.com

By Gabrielle Zumpano ‘16, GUEST WRITER

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Major changes made their way into the LaCasse Dining Center following Sodexo’s failing health inspection.

Walking into the LaCasse Dining Center for the first time this fall semester, the cafeteria for the most part looked the same as we left it last May. If you take a closer look you will notice some changes. It is no surprise that these changes were related to the health inspection given at the end of last semester.

In May of 2014, the Sodexo management of the LaCasse Dining Center at Le Moyne received an unsatisfactory result from the Onondaga County Health Department. Some of the violations were temperature related, while some were facility issues.

“[There were] only two small food violations on the health inspection,” said Drew D’Angelo, a LaCasse Dining Center manager. “Normally those food violations would not have been an issue. When they left here, we thought we had passed. We corrected all of the issues while they were here.”

One of the noticeable changes in the dining hall is the placement of the chips. Instead of the metal chip bowl everyone was used to seeing, the chips are now held in plastic containers that close. Also, the tongs used to get the chips have their own designated area to be set down in between uses. The health inspection cited that the utensils were coming in contact with everyone’s hands and then making direct contact with the chips. However, the inspection also cited that cookies, like the chips, had no protection from contact of multiple people, and similar measures have not been taken with the cookies.

“The apples were an issue because they weren’t under a sneeze guard. And there was some yogurt that was out of temperature,” D’Angelo said. “We made some positive changes.”

The apples, which were cited for not having protection from contact from multiple people, now have tongs placed by them. Whether the students use them or not is outside of the control of the dining hall.

“Food needs to be 40 degrees. We vented the cabinet underneath; the yogurt was having a problem because the cabinet wasn’t vented so the heat from the compressor was building up underneath the refrigeration lines,” said D’Angelo. “We also lowered the product by two more inches into the cabinet.”

The Onondaga County Health Department official document on June 5th, 2014 states that a few of the violations have been corrected. Some of those corrected violations include, but are not limited to: chemicals being stored next to the salad bar gloves, condiments at the self-serve breakfast bar noted at 60 degrees, and puddings at the salad bar not being refrigerated.

“The laws change from year to year,” said D’Angelo. “They don’t send [updates on the law] out to you, you have to seek them.”

It will be interesting not only to see what future health inspections have in store for Sodexo now that changes have been implemented, but also to see if they will be required to make further changes.

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Is Sodexo doing enough?