Concordia University Food services tender focuses on nutrition and local sourcing

Concordia University

What does the Concordia community want in the way of food services?

According to the comprehensive consultation process that began in fall 2013, students, faculty and staff want to know where their food comes from and what’s in it. And they want it to be nutritious and reasonably priced.

All these needs are met in the recently released request for proposals (RFP) for Concordia’s new food-service provider. The RFP solicits bids from potential food-service providers, and a five-year contract is awarded to the winning candidate.

Promoting your health and nutrition

In response to feedback from the Concordia community, which includes the food-services survey, requirements were put in place in the RFP to ensure the food is nutritious and healthful:

  • Favour fresh, organic, vegetarian and vegan options
  • Prepare fresh meals, soups and baked goods daily and on campus
  • Prepare healthful recipes as per Canada’s Food Guide
  • Offer alternatives to common food allergens and intolerances
  • Make nutritional information available to help guide choices
  • Offer healthful options as “Grab and Go” items and in vending machines.

Sustainably responsible

The food-services RFP incorporates a slew of new requirements, including sustainable practices.

For example, a whopping 75 per cent of produce purchases in summer must be local!

And while Concordia already requires the service of only Canadian dairy products and free-range eggs, the chosen supplier will also be required to make annual increases in such responsible purchasing practices as fair-trade coffee, sustainable seafood, organic and ethically-raised products, including Quebec-raised meats and poultry.

In addition to respecting the university’s recycling and waste management practices, and favouring recyclable, compostable and bulk packaging, all equipment and its maintenance, including vending machines, must be Energy Star certified.

Beyond vending machines, bottled water will be banned from all retail locations covered by the scope of this new contract. See the FAQ for more on the particular locations.

Additionally, within the life of the contract, the supplier will collaborate with the university toward becoming a Fair Trade Campus.

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