The first week of Sept. California State University, Bakersfield Campus Dining posted on their Instagram about limited food items and staffing. According to the post, “Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, many of our suppliers are experiencing shortages,” and they are currently “working with them to ensure we have substitute items.”
“It’s been a non-traditional start to the semester given the supply chain challenges that are being experienced in all industries across the nation,” Owen Smith, Food Service Director, wrote in an email.
History major Miché describes his experience with CSUB Dining as “overwhelmingly good so far.” However, he admits that there have been shortages of his favorite items such as seaweed salad and even mayonnaise.
CSUB Dining’s current focus is making efforts to minimize the impact these shortages have on the campus community. CSUB Dining warns students, staff and faculty, “kitchens may contain or have come in contact with these allergens.” Among those listed are: eggs, peanuts, milk, shellfish, soy, tree nuts, fish, wheat and gluten.
“Our largest concern is with pandemic-caused supply chain disruptions requiring ingredient substitutions, which may result in allergen and ingredient information on our menu boards, recipe cards, and website that may not be current,” stated Smith.
CSUB Dining encourages those planning to eat at Runner Cafe to contact them prior to their visit to create a meal plan that will meet their nutritional needs.
Psychology major Stephany describes her experience at Runner Cafe as, “Pretty okay. The staff is really nice and welcoming. I have some complaints about the food – there’s not a lot of options. They always get rid of stuff and depending on who’s cooking sometimes the food can be undercooked or raw or burnt. But either way I think this is pretty good and I like it.”
“The food is good and the presentation is really good; it is pretty pricey though,” said theater major Hunter Wolosz, as they had their first meal at The Runner Cafe.
Aside from the food shortages, in an Instagram post CSUB Dining asked students to, “Please be kind to the staff as they are working hard to fulfill labor shortages.”
“We value our students, faculty, and staff on the CSUB campus and are actively managing and monitoring the pandemic-caused supply chain issue. Unfortunately, it is impossible to predict how long these disruptions will last. We will do our best to fulfill any campus dining food requests and will provide updates to the campus dining customers as we receive additional information,” wrote Smith.
Students and staff members seeking more information on the current CSUB Dining shortages can find more information at www.csubdining.com.