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The Blue & Gray Press | December 13, 2018

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On-campus dining should add new ‘mini bowl’ to Qdoba menu

On-campus dining should add new ‘mini bowl’ to Qdoba menu

By SEHAR JAMAL

Staff Writer

On-campus dining should offer mini sized burrito bowls at Qdoba.

Qdoba is a go-to for most students on campus, but its large portions and corresponding price make it harder for students to choose to eat there, economically and health-wise.

As the Qdoba franchise unveils its new mini-sized burrito bowls, students see it as an opportunity to eat healthier for less, and healthy and economical food options are a struggle for college students to find.

“If I’m looking for something quick and healthy to eat I’ll get something from Simply To Go, but it’s always overpriced and I always regret it after. A smaller bowl will give me the perfect nutritional value and I’ll get to enjoy Qdoba,” said sophomore and biology major, Laiba Murad.

Regarding price, many students avoid Qdoba since a burrito bowl costs a meal swipe plus $3. “A meal swipe can get me an unlimited amount of food at the UC, but not even a whole bowl at Qdoba?”  said sophomore Chelsie Valencia, upset with the lack of options. With the option of a mini-sized bowl, it can amount to just one meal swipe so students can eat there without paying out of pocket.

Burrito bowls from Qdoba can also vary from 500-1,000 calories per bowl, amounting to half of the recommended daily calorie intake of 2,000 calories per day. Whereas the mini bowl option only amasses 200-400 calories. Offering this option will benefit students who eat based on nutritional value and calorie count. Qdoba’s food itself is considerably healthy and filling, but its large portion sizes include a surplus of calories.

The big bowls are also often too much to eat in one sitting. “I’m never able to finish a bowl, and when I save it for later it’s never as good, so I usually just end up throwing it away,” said sophomore and chemistry major Huda Al-Bana.

This adds to the amount of food wasted, and as a college campus that claims to value sustainability, limiting food waste should be a priority for UMW. A solution to limit this food waste would be to offer a smaller bowl size, filling students up without filling up the trash.

A majority of students agree with the option of a smaller bowl size, with 63% of respondents citing it as a better option in an online social media poll I conducted on Instagram.

“Although I’m fine with the bowl size, I’ll definitely want to get an option that costs less but still fills me up on days I don’t want to spend money, and I don’t see anything wrong with adding this as an option,” said sophomore and computer science major Rameen Shahid.

By offering a smaller bowl size, like all Qdoba locations elsewhere, our campus Qdoba will better fulfill student needs and demands. With the mini bowl, students are able to eat a consciously healthy and low-calorie meal at a considerably better price. This small addition will improve dining options on campus while also limiting food wasted from the students whose appetites aren’t big enough for the whole bowl. For campus dining and the UMW campus as a whole, introducing mini bowls at Qdoba is a win-win.

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