2018 Food Steward Training Guide
Food Steward Job Responsibilities
Student Buyers’ Association (SBA)
Other food orders
Fifth Third Mastercard Credit Card
Receiving food delivery orders
Fair Trade ordering options
Budgeting for Food Stewards and Treasurers
Formulating the budget
Staying within budget
Three tips for keeping your food costs down are
Paying and reconciling
Meal & Guff Food Mgmnt for Food Stewards & Cooks
Menu-Planning for Stewards, Cooks, & Menu-Planners
Ordering food is the responsibility of the food steward. For most effective ordering, the food steward should follow these tips:
All food orders are coordinated through Student Buyers' Association (SBA). Judy can help food stewards with knowing the past history of their house’s food purchases!
EMAIL Orders: firstname.lastname@example.org
SBA is a buying cooperative which serves the ICC and U-M fraternities and sororities. SBA uses a modified bidding system to secure for its members the best price for the highest quality and the most convenient service. Modified bidding means that for some foods (e.g. chips) SBA uses only one vendor who gives a set discount. For most foods SBA compares the prices of several vendors and chooses the best value. They are a terrific resource for all things that must be purchased.
Each house must place and control their own standing orders for dairy, bread, bagels, and coffee directly with a vendor approved by SBA. (A standing order is an order for on-going food delivery--weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, etc. Once a standing order is placed, it will be delivered automatically on the pre-arranged days and in the set quantities unless the house calls in and changes the order.) If you want to change your standing order (maybe you are getting more milk than you can use), you must contact the vendor, not SBA.
All orders other than standing orders are placed through SBA. Remember to order in large quantities for better value. To get free delivery to your home, each vendor has a minimum order requirement of anywhere from $50 to $300. For smaller houses, coordinating food orders with supply orders can help the house meet the minimum order requirement as well as giving substantial savings--up to 50%--on supplies.
All SBA member houses receive a credit card for cash purchases at Kroger, Meijer. Charge card available to SBA members to replace cash purchases requiring reimbursement, allow for purchases where no accounts exists and make purchasing and record keeping easier. Access to online site to view purchases is available and encouraged. GFS offers a significant discount to SBA members if a full case is purchased, and a limited discount if less than a full case is purchased. Meijer and Kroger offer no discount whatsoever.
Someone must receive the order. Often it is simply whoever happens to be around when the order arrives. The receiver must know the importance of putting the food away promptly and properly. Perishables first! Rotate!
Checking with Judy is your first call for information on fair trade options from the SBA. Here’s some information as well.
Careful budgeting is one of the simplest ways to facilitate successful food and kitchen management. It involves two elements:
The food steward and the house treasurer usually work out a food budget together. They ought to confer first with their house members to find out how much meat or other costly foods the members want to eat and what sorts of guff food the house wants. Here is a Sample survey. The budget is based on how many members there are and how much the house expects to spend per member.
Refer to the budget of the previous term, but don’t forget to confer with SBA to find out about significant changes in food costs and inflation. Try to find out, also, how successful the previous food budget was. Did the house get charged an assessment for overspending on food? Was the food of decent quality? Include a 2% safety factor over what you expect to spend because it’s better to over budget than to under budget. Remember that if you spend less than you budget, house members will get a rebate; if you spend more, house members will get an assessment.
The easiest way to know whether you are staying within budget is to divide the semester’s food budget into weekly allotments. If you know exactly how much you are allowed to spend per week, you will have no problem staying within budget.
Keep track of how much money you spend on different food categories to help you predict what you will spend on them in the future. Keep track of how much money you have spent over-all and how much you have left to spend. It is normal to overspend the first month of ordering, so don’t be alarmed if you do.
This is one of the most complicated aspects of food and kitchen management. It requires close teamwork and constant communication between members, cooks, menu-planners, work managers, and the food steward. Everyone involved in the team effort to provide adequate nourishment to the members must be educated about their responsibilities and be held accountable for them.
Ideally the food steward oversees all aspects of food and meal management, making sure that all officers and members know their duties and are performing them adequately. The food steward's personal duties include ordering food that the cooks need, making sure that the house is well-stocked with spices, bulk foods, guff foods, and other staples, delegating food preparation, orienting cooks to the kitchen, and educating members about proper food handling and storage through orientation and signs. The food steward must develop a working system for separating guff and non-guff foods. The food steward needs to keep his/her eyes open at all times for poor performance in food matters. S/He should respond to any member complaints regarding food and relay the complaint to the proper member of the food and kitchen management team.
Menu-planners must ensure that meals are nutritious and varied. They must also ensure that recipes are submitted to the food steward in time for him/her to order necessary ingredients. See following pages for menu planning guidelines.
Cooks must prepare appetizing meals and have them ready on time. They must be educated about proper nutrition and know how to handle foods properly. They must know whether any members in their house are vegetarian or vegan and cook appropriate meal options for anyone with special dietary concerns. They must ensure that all prep work gets done (e.g. defrosting meat or soaking beans). See following pages for cook guidelines.
Work manager must assign competent house members to the task of cooking meals. Cooks must be held to the same standards as other house laborers regarding poor performance, which includes unexplained late meals or repeated unsatisfactory meals.
Members need to be educated about proper food handling and storage. All members performing kitchen-related labor must understand the importance of following health regulations. They must let the cooks and menu planners know whether or not the meals are meeting their needs. They must respect the difference between guff and non-guff foods.
Whether the food steward or a designated menu-planner plans the meals, menu-planning should involve the cooks. Most people are happier to cook recipes of their own choice than recipes assigned them by someone else. Menu-planners must offer members varied and nutritious meals. Providing healthy and good food is one of the ways in which co-ops offer a higher standard of living for their members.
Menu-planners must confer with the members to find out about food preferences and special dietary needs, whether based on health concerns, religious beliefs, social concerns, or anything else. The menus should reflect the general eating desires of the members, and each meal must accommodate the diet concerns of each member.
Menus must be planned at least 2 weeks in advance, and at least 4 weeks should be planned at once.
Every meal must be balanced, that is, include food in each of the food groups and in the correct proportions. The following materials will tell you how many servings a person should eat daily of each food group. They also tell you what constitutes a serving in each of the different food groups. Meals need not provide all of the recommended servings of each food (people eat throughout the day, not just at the communal cooked meal); however, the meals should reflect the recommended- proportions between the foods, for example each meal should have more grain than meat, more vegetables than dairy, etc.
As a cook, your primary responsibilities are the timely and appetizing preparation of the recipes you are given. Your duties include the following:
Vegetarian meals will probably be a big part of co-op dining. Many co opers are vegetarians, and food costs can be kept down by limiting the use of meat. Meat is virtually the only source of complete protein, but vegetarian foods, if served in proper combinations, can create a meal which provides complete protein. The most important foods in attaining vegetarian complete proteins are rich grains combined with legumes. (See table of legumes below in case you are wondering: "What is a legume?")
Dairy can replace a legume, but dairy products are often high in fat and should not be used often. Some vegetables can replace grains, but you should be sure that the vegetable is a significant part of the recipe. If a dairy product or a legume is combined with a grain product or substantial vegetable, the combination equals a complete protein. Rice and beans; spinach and eggs, lentils and corn; tofu and rice are examples of complete proteins.
Most vegetarians will eat no meat but will eat other animal products, such as butter, milk, eggs, etc. Vegans, on the other hand, will not eat any animal products whatsoever, including milk, cheese, eggs, gelatin, and even honey. For processed foods, check to see whether they contain any animal products. Vegans have a right to know whether or not a meal fits into their dietary restrictions. lf there are any vegans or vegetarians living or boarding at your house YOU MUST PROVIDE VEGETARIANS WITH A MENU OPTION AT EVERY MEAL. Vegetarian options mean a balanced vegetarian meal, not simply a meat entree without the meat.
Menus should be varied and appropriate to the season. During summer, you can take advantage of all the seasonal fruits and vegetables. During winter, soups/stews/chilis are a great idea along with hot fresh bread and small salad. Ethnic meals by cooks who know how to prepare them are always popular. Brighten up plain meals with a colorful side dish or a dessert. Make sure meals are not all beige. Don't forget to serve fresh vegetables often. Avoid unpopular meals.
The following lists can help to plan meals. A complete meal item combined with a vegetable constitutes a full meal. A grain-based course combined with a legume/dairy/meat-based course and served with a vegetable also constitutes a full meal. Soups should be served with bread. Don't forget occasional desserts. Many of these are meal staples, and the ingredients can be kept on hand at all times--this can be especially useful if a cook neglects to submit a menu!
(coupled with a vegetable, these dishes constitute a full balanced meal)
(must be served with every meal, either a complete meal dish or a combo of legume and grain courses)
(must be combined with a legume/dairy/meat and a vegetable to constitute a full balanced meal)
(must be combined with a grain course and a vegetable to constitute a full balanced meal)