Nutritous food options in MacHall have always been a concern for students. With options like Pizza 73, Tim Hortons and A&W, students are not always getting the nutrients they need.
Fuel for Gold, a recent addition to the MacHall food court community, is trying to provide students with a healthy choice. Fuel for Gold opened in MacHall early this semester. Originally a lunch program offered by the Canadian Sports Centre Calgary for registered athletes, Fuel for Gold is expanding to University of Calgary students and faculty.
In 2007, Fuel for Gold partnered with the U of C and Chartwells to serve food in the dining centre. The partnership was successful, but Fuel for Gold wanted to reach more people.
"There was already a relationship between the university and the Fuel for Gold program. Making the move to include the entire university population just made sense. It was a chance for us to grow some more and give back to the community," said cscc director of marketing and partnerships David Haughton.
All of their food is cooked and prepared in the back of the MacHall kiosk Â-- homemade sauces, no cold cut meats or frozen products. Fuel for Gold's coffee is provided by Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters. Phil Robertson and Sebastian Sztabzyb have been named part of Calgary's Top 40 Under 40 this year.
"It's a marriage between great food and a wine to go with it, so to speak. We have water, juices and Gatorade like other kiosks, but we also wanted a good quality coffee and not just a classic drip, run of the mill coffee," said Haughton. "We wanted to align ourselves with another company that takes the same care toward its product like we do. Phil and Sebastian do just that."
The main differences between the dining centre and the MacHall kiosk are the variety of products available, business times and the speed the food is delivered. As with most kiosks in MacHall, the $5 'grab and go' concept is key to which products are available.
"The dining centre is only open for a couple hours a day, but the kiosk is open all day. It's easier for me to get to the MacHall location than it is to the dining centre," said Canadian skeleton athlete Micaela Widmer. "It's great to go to a food place that uses high quality ingredients. It takes a lot of thinking out of what I'm going to eat as an athlete."
The original purpose of the Fuel for Gold program was to provide high-performance athletes with affordable and healthy lunch options.
"Just to have a healthy place that is fairly priced in MacHall is great for students busy with exams and whatnot," said Widmer. "Before I became an athlete I always thought it would be cool to be eating the same thing as olympians."
Proceeds made from the kiosk and the Dining Centre go to sponsor local organic ingredient growers and athletes.