Two UW dining rooms switch to buffet style due to food shortages The Badger Herald
The Gordon Avenue Market and Four Lakes Market dining halls switched to all-you-can-eat dining on September 10 due to campus food shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The change comes as catering staff grapple with industry-wide supply chain challenges. The change was implemented in hopes of shortening wait times while maintaining a wide variety of menus and keeping price evaluated, according to a University of Wisconsin newsletter.
According to the bulletin, the prices for residents’ meals at these locations will be $ 4.99 for breakfast, $ 5.99 for lunch and $ 6.99 for dinner. Prices for non-residents will be $ 8.31 for breakfast, $ 9.98 for lunch, and $ 11.65 for dinner.
Gordon’s and Four Lakes have adapted these flat rates to become a buffet in place of the a la carte option that dining rooms have traditionally offered.
There are currently no changes planned for the other canteens on campus, according to the bulletin.
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University Housing spokesperson Brendon Dybdahl said the change was unexpected but necessary due to long wait times and unavailable menu items.
“The decision to make this change was not anticipated, but once our residents moved in we found that the long lines and staff were affecting students in a way that needed to be quickly corrected,” Dybdahl said in an email to the Badger Herald.
The new pricing model is consistent with prices at Rheta Market, a dining room that was buffet style before the move to Gordons and Four Lakes.
Dybdahl said there are still ways for students to have profitable meals such as Carson’s Market and Liz’s Market, ordering through GrubHub and an increase in take-out options available at Flamingo Run convenience stores.
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UW freshman Raines Lucas said he didn’t feel overly affected by the change, although it can be unconventional at times when a full meal isn’t needed.
“I would say that is not a major inconvenience, but I would not say that I have heard someone say that they are taking advantage of it. [from the change]”Said Lucas.” We’ve always had the option of Rheta’s for a buffet and by removing the option of Gordon’s and Four Lakes I don’t think that benefits anybody. “
Most of these changes are temporary, according to Dybdahl.
However, the entire food industry continues to experience food and staff shortages due to COVID-19.
“As new staff becomes more efficient every day, we anticipate longer queues than usual and wait times will improve,” said Dydbahl. “We continue to do our best to make things better as quickly as possible. “
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