Sodexo to highlight Mediterranean food at the 650 U.S. college campuses it serves this school year, says fare is heart-healthy, exotic, appeals to vegetarians and nonvegetarians

GATHERSBURG, Maryland , August 15, 2011 () – When college students head to class at the 650 Sodexo-served campuses across the country this fall, they'll find menus featuring heart-healthy Mediterranean food, chefs preparing their meals while they wait with VIP treatment, world cuisine, and old favorites made with healthier ingredients – all built on research and insights from fellow students.

"We welcome freshmen and all students to enjoy the culinary innovations our talented chefs create each day that are interesting to the college-student palate and ultimately enhance the whole experience at school," said Tom Post, president of Sodexo Education - Campus. "We're responding to those who want healthy and tailor-made, customizable cuisine, which includes an opportunity to chat with our chefs while they prepare made-to-order meals."

Here are some of the menu items students at Sodexo-served campuses will find this year.

Grilled Chicken Souvlaki Kabob
Paella
Spanakopita
Cous Cous Chicken Stew
Orecchiette with Broccoli and Garbanzo Beans
Fattoush and Sumac (Pita Bread Salad with Tangy Dressing)
Spanish Tomato Bread with Manchego Cheese
Edamame and Corn Salad
Pesto Pasta Bowl
Wild Mushroom Risotto Balls with Pesto Aioli


More photos available at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sodexousa/sets/72157627417759552/

Sodexo's main resident dining menu offering for the 2011-2012 school year will highlight Mediterranean cuisine. Mediterranean fare is heart-healthy, exotic, and appeals to vegetarians and omnivores alike. Sodexo will promote its new offer by hosting cultural and culinary events at colleges across the country through its Global Chef program, which will showcase visiting Sodexo chefs from Spain and Italy throughout the academic year.

"Sodexo has unparalleled expertise when it comes to world cuisine because we can tap into culinary expertise from chefs in the 80 countries where we operate," said Chef Rob Morasco, senior director of offer development for Sodexo Education. "A chef from Spain can visit our North American culinary team to demonstrate the traditional techniques used to create authentic paella, for example."

Other 2011 menu trends include stealth health – maintaining traditional flavors while substituting healthier ingredients. That trend is making popular gluten-free pasta and whole wheat and brown rice offerings. Students continue to insist on locally-sourced ingredients.

Sodexo uses a three-pronged approach to monitoring trends and developing college cafe menus, which includes researching desired tastes, using our global resources to create authentic flavors, and bringing those flavors to market. Sodexo holds frequent taste-test focus groups with students and consults with its team of topnotch chefs to develop this list. Sodexo conducted a food trends expo at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pa. in late 2010 to solicit feedback for this fall's menu. Sodexo develops menu offerings for college students via its Customer Insight team with research from Sodexo's Student Board of Directors, student food trend expo events, Nielsen's Annual Restaurant Audit, Teenage Research Unlimited, Technomics Menu Monitor, NPD Group, Sodexo's culinary team of chefs and vendor partners.

About Sodexo

Sodexo in North America

Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com), leading Quality of Daily Life Solutions company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, delivers On Site Service Solutions in Corporate, Education, Health Care, Government, and Remote Site segments, as well as Motivation Solutions such as Esteem Pass. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.SodexoFoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $15 million in grants to fight hunger in America. Visit the corporate blog at www.sodexoUSA.com/blog.

Sodexo, world leader in Quality of Daily Life Solutions

Quality of Life plays an important role in the progress of individuals and the performance of organizations. Based on this conviction, Sodexo acts as the strategic partner for companies and institutions that place a premium on performance and employee well-being, as it has since Pierre Bellon founded the company in 1966. Sharing the same passion for service, Sodexo's 380,000 employees in 80 countries design, manage and deliver an unrivaled array of On Site Service Solutions and Motivation Solutions. Sodexo has created a new form of service business that contributes to the fulfillment of its employees and the economic, social and environmental development of the communities, regions and countries in which it operates.

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