Students don’t like what they ‘C’


Denny Cristales, Editor-in-Chief

UPDATE (Oct. 3, 4:21 p.m): Dean of Student Services Gilbert Contreras could not meet in person, but he learned “a lot of valuable information” in the meeting with Fresh and Natural, according to Student Events Specialist Cynthia Chavez. He is scheduled for interview on Monday at 9 a.m. for further details.

UPDATE (Oct. 2, 3:45 p.m.): A meeting with Fresh and Natural regarding the “C” rating was postponed until Friday, Oct. 3, at 10 a.m. due to the vendor bringing in more representatives, according to Dean of Student Services Gilbert Contreras.

Normal story is as follows:

Fresh and Natural, deemed to be a healthy replacement on campus, is anything but, according to students.

Luis Villalta, a physical therapy major, said, “It’s a school, so shouldn’t it be an ‘A’ (rated) place?”

A “C” rating planted on the wall, right behind the counter of Fresh and Natural, has students wondering how the new vendor has been marked with such a low score.

According to Tiffany Nguyen, the manager of Fresh and Natural, the “C” rating comes as a result of a few things.

She mentioned how employees were taking breaks in the back kitchen, drinking water, and how someone even cut himself while cooking and tended to it and continued to work without following proper sanitation policies, such as wearing a glove.

Among other things are no labels on the foods and some flies coming through the kitchens.

The official report states possible food-borne illness and environmental hazard.

“Really, I’m just surprised,” arts major Kristofer Garcia said. “Obviously, (Fresh and Natural) should take it up a notch and change the cleaning process, or whatever. I guess you can’t always believe what you’re getting as a student.”

Director of Purchasing Mark Logan has already revealed a course of action.

“The college is aware of the grade and is currently looking into the nature and the reason for the grade. The college will also be asking for a remediation plan from Fresh and Natural to increase the grade to an ‘A.'”

Dean of Student Services Gilbert Contreras said a private meeting with representatives of Fresh and Natural will take place Wednesday in order to touch base on why the vendor got the grade it got and what can be done to combat it.

“Right now, we’re working with and communicating with Fresh and Natural … we scheduled a meeting to try to get information on the ‘C’ rating. But, just in general, to share the concerns that students brought forward about cleanliness and some other issues that have come up, like pricing.

“We take it very seriously … Students pushed very hard to get (Fresh and Natural) here, we’re hoping the issues are addressed promptly.”

Fresh and Natural debuted at the beginning of the fall semester, splitting off and occupying two spaces – One: Bowl and Market Deli and Burdogs Gourmet Eats. Fresh and Natural replaced Frantone’s and Chicago Harv’s.

Now, with an official “C” rating, student reactions ranged from surprise to the rating, to personal experiences with the service, as well.

Janice Craig, a business major, described how her food was apparently poorly made; with her breakfast burrito being too “buttery” and “oily,” with the addition of the meat, such as the bacon, not being cooked well, or the potato being hard.

“I went to go tell (the employees) ‘Hey, I need to get my food well done, because this is not well done’ … and it takes (the cooks) about 15 minutes to finish a breakfast burrito.”

Elizabeth Jaime, a Sociology major, said, “I was shocked at first; I actually really like the food; only sometimes I know that it’s not (Fresh and Natural’s) best.”