Gordon Avenue Market and Four Lakes Market dining rooms switched to all-you-care-to-eat on September 10 due to food shortages on campus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The change comes when restaurant staff try to tackle industry-wide challenges in the supply chain. The move was made in the hope of reducing waiting times while maintaining a wide choice of menus and a low price. according to a newsletter from the University of Wisconsin.
According to the newsletter, Food prices for residents at these locations are $ 4.99 for breakfast, $ 5.99 for lunch, and $ 6.99 for dinner. Non-resident prices are $ 8.31 for breakfast, $ 9.98 for lunch, and $ 11.65 for dinner.
Gordon’s and Four Lakes have adapted these flat rates to a buffet instead of the traditional a la carte dining options.
No changes are currently planned for the other canteens on campus, according to the Newsletter.
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University Housing spokesman Brendon Dybdahl said the change was unexpected but necessary due to long waiting times and unavailable menu items.
“The decision to make this change wasn’t predictable, but when our residents moved in we found that long lines and staff were affecting students in ways that needed to be resolved quickly,” Dybdahl said in an email to The Badger Herald.
The new pricing model corresponds to the prices charged in Rheta’s Market, a dining room that was buffet style prior to the changeover in Gordons and Four Lakes.
Dybdahl said there are still opportunities for students to grab inexpensive meals like Carson’s Market and Liz’s Market, order through GrubHub, and get an increase in grab-and-go options at Flamingo Run convenience stores .
UW freshman Raines Lucas said he doesn’t feel particularly affected by this change, although it can sometimes be unconventional if a full meal is not needed.
“I’d say it’s not a major inconvenience, but I wouldn’t say that I’ve heard anyone benefit from it [from the change]”Said Lucas. “We always had the Rheta’s buffet option and removed the Gordon’s and Four Lakes option. I don’t think it’s going to be of any use to anyone. “
Most of these changes are temporary, according to Dybdahl.
However, the entire food industry continues to suffer from food and staff shortages due to COVID-19.
“As new employees become more efficient every day, we expect longer queues than usual and waiting times will improve,” said Dydbahl. “We’re still doing our best to improve things as quickly as possible.”