Food for Thought - Keyano a Food Service Hub for Local Schools
Every school day, long before the sun comes up, work starts at Keyano College to prepare nutritional meals for almost 1,400 elementary, high school, and college students in the Wood Buffalo region.
The first Chartwell’s food services workers arrive at the College before 5 a.m. As the day progresses, more arrive to help prepare, serve, and deliver. It’s a bustling location until the late afternoon, then work continues behind the scenes to prepare for the next day, so the process can be repeated in the morning.
For Candace Cheney, Director of Food Services for Chartwell’s,—Keyano’s on-site food services provider—it’s a familiar pattern, but she notes there have also been many changes in food services for colleges and schools in recent years as growing focus is placed on enhancing health and wellbeing as well as providing variety. Her team’s ongoing challenge is to provide meals that students want, and that still provide good nutrition.
Their menus reflect that. They focus on fresh foods and provide options that consider factors like protein, salt content, calories, dietary fibre, saturated and unsaturated fats, and more. She says they have also listened carefully to their customers to enhance the services they provide.
Since 2011, Chartwells has offered this ever-evolving service at Keyano. As well, the contract provides for a partnership with local school districts for food services to Westwood High School, Ecole McTavish High School, Holy Trinity High School, and Father Mercredi. In September, the company was tapped to provide nutritional programs to two more schools in the region: Father Turcotte and Greely Road.
An important part of this partnership was renewed in November. After a thorough request for proposal (RFP) process, the company was re-awarded the food services contract for Keyano College, and a five-year agreement was signed that will see a Tim Horton’s outlet added to the college’s Elements Cafeteria.
The new outlet will provide full beverage and bakery offerings to students, faculty and staff, and to the community—which is a significant upgrade from the self-service Tim Horton’s kiosk currently offered at the College. The outlet is expected to be operation by mid-year and will employ at least three people.
Other improvements to the College food service are a part of the new agreement, including a revamped pizza station and a salad bar. The aim is to provide the best service for students and community.
Chartwells is a part of the Compass Group of companies, and in addition to the regular services that it offers the college, it also provides important catering services for special events, including Keyano’s signature annual Gala event.
“Chartwells is looking forward to our continuing partnership with Keyano College,” said Curtis Haimila, District Manager, Compass Group. “We are excited with the next steps at the College to include the Tim Horton’s kiosk, introduction of our new Fresh Fork catering in early 2018 and further enhancements to the retail program at the College. Thanks to our onsite team for meeting the needs at Keyano College and taking food services to the next level.”
The Elements Cafeteria at Keyano College will see a number of significant improvements this year as the result of the renewed partnership with Chartwells.
A Tim Horton’s kiosk at Keyano College is going to be replaced with a new Tim Horton’s outlet that will provide full beverage and bakery offerings.
This Moroccan inspired offering at Keyano College is one of the ways Chartwell’s is introducing new variety to its menu.