Anatomy of an Allergen-Sensitive Station

Simple Servings takes measured steps to reduce diners’ allergen risks.

Simple Servings Anatomy Of An Allergen Sensitive Station
Photo courtesy of Dave Nadreau/Providence College

At Providence College in Providence, R.I., Simple Servings stands out as a notable platform at the renovated Raymond Dining Hall, a Sodexo account. The platform specializes in meals prepared without common allergens—dairy, eggs, wheat, soy, shellfi sh, peanuts or tree nuts. Simple Servings’ meals feature meat or fi sh at centerplate, accompanied by vegetables and gluten-free sides such as quinoa, sweet potato, corn and assorted rices.

“Simple Servings’ food is very clean in [the sense that] we don’t use any convenience items,” says David Nadreau, Providence College director of operations for resident dining. All meals are protein-rich, and the fresh vegetables off ered at the stir-fry station are cooked in olive oil to avoid potential allergens from sauces, he says.

Simple Servings tends to dish out 250 to 300 portions per day, while Raymond Dining Hall on the whole serves about 3,000 guests daily across its 10 platforms.

“The Simple Servings platform is completely independent from the rest of the servery,” says Tina Reddington, Sodexo’s national manager of health, wellness and nutrition. “The platform has its own cookline, its own storage and its own prep.” From a design and layout point of view, Simple Servings sits on the edge of the servery, far from any possible allergen, such as flour from Providence College’s Friar Style Pizza & Pasta concept.

Even the platform’s serving staff are bound to this station for the duration of their shifts. “We don’t want our servers interacting with other stations and other prep or production, where they could potentially get something on their clothes or their hands and bring it back to Simple Servings,” Reddington adds. Take a look at some of the defining elements of the Simple Servings station.

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