Ask Chip: Grill and Food Truck

Q: I think we understand that hospital leadership is trying to offer healthier alternatives in the cafeteria, but the question remains, “Are the grill and fryer going away anytime soon?” There are rumors that they are going away.  

A: Thank you for your question. As you know, helping everyone at Sibley be as healthy as possible is a passion of mine. My goal is to make the healthy choice the easy choice—for employees and for our patients and their families. This will help us achieve our vision for Sibley to be the role model for innovation in health care and wellness for all.

One way we try to make it easy to focus on health is by offering a wide array of food choices at Sibley. We’ve been working hard to introduce new choices with higher nutritional values, while continuing to offer some of the old favorites. I hope that many of you have found some new options you like. Sibley’s nutrition services has rolled out additional plant-based menu options that are available at the grill daily, which I think you will enjoy. Nutrition services also will install refrigerated vending in the Emergency Department in the next month. This new vending option will offer “grab and go” foods such as salads, greek yogurt, fruits and veggies.

To answer your question, no, the grill is not going away. We will continue to offer all the grill options currently available. We plan to eventually remove the fryer, because offering deep-fried foods doesn’t align with our commitment to health or our vision to be a role model for wellness. We don’t have a firm date for the removal of the fryer, but it may be removed in FY19.

I know this decision won’t be popular. We will offer oven-baked versions of some of the most popular fried food options. We will test these alternatives and get your feedback on them before we make any of these changes.

We are excited to continue to expand the options available to you at Sibley. As always, you’re welcome to bring food from home and to consume any food of your choice while you are here. I appreciate your understanding as we work toward achieving our vision of being a role model for wellness.

Q: Food Truck Tuesday always seems to be successful with long lines at the trucks. Could we do this more often? I realize this might take business away from the cafeteria, so we would have to find a way to make it benefit the hospital.

A:I’m glad to hear you are enjoying Food Truck Tuesday. Offering the food trucks is one way that we provide a wide variety of food options at Sibley. Although lines may seem long, our food truck partners have reported to us that they are not seeing the volume of sales that they need to support coming to Sibley. We work closely with the food trucks to ensure they are seeing value in their partnership with us. Continuing to offer this option is dependent on their interest. We are working hard to identify a solution that benefits Sibley and the food trucks, not only because we want to continue to offer you additional food choices, but also because the food trucks donate ten percent of their gross revenues to the Sibley Foundation. The more people there are in line on Food Truck Tuesdays, the more likely our partners will want to expand their relationship with us. We will keep you posted on what we hear from our food truck partners. In the meantime, if you are a fan of the food trucks, make sure to support them each Tuesday.

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