Simple 600 meal program helps students eat healthy

Bon Appétit will launch Simple 600, a meal program with low-calorie options, on Sept. 8.

Brittany Cervantes, Writer

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Bon Appétit will launch Simple 600 on Thursday Sept. 8, a program designed to help students eat healthy by promoting low-calorie meal options.

Simple 600 is a meal program implemented by Bon Appétit Management Company that will only be available in the Caf, not in other campus eateries like Common Grounds, Eagles Nest and The Talon.

Meal program offers a variety of choices

At the launch, the Caf will contain an appearance of a salad bar setup, which will incorporate the flavors from the Middle East, Mediterranean, America, Latin America and Asia. There will be a menu for students displaying information on calories for students to stay under 600 calories and an option to choose up to 15 different toppings.

As a part of the options, students are able to choose, for example, three dry products and maybe even fruit while staying under 600 calories, Steve Rall, Bon Appetit’s general manager, said. It will be measured in ½ a cup, ¾, or a cup to help show each serving size.

“The concept will be interesting to see how it goes at Biola, are the kids going to follow the Simple 600 guidelines or will they add more? There may be self-servers trying to serve themselves and may not pay attention to the scoop size,” Rall said.

Simple 600 a response to students’ desires

Rall explained that Bon Appetit takes basic ingredients and tests them to determine how many calories are in each serving.

“To the best of our ability, we desire to provide patrons the information, ability, and assistance to make healthy food choices which satisfies their eating habits and desires,” said Don Sims, senior director of Auxiliary Services.

Bon Appetit’s Simple 600 plan all started from the corporate office. Bonnie Powell, director of communications, further expanded on how the program originated.

“Simple 600 is a program by Bon Appétit Management Company that we introduced because we knew that many of our customers are interested in eating healthy, lower-calorie, and great-tasting meals, or are already on specific diets that these meals would complement,” Powell said.

Another appealing factor Powell thinks will play into the success of this program, is student’s desire to avoid the dreaded “freshman 15,” something she thinks will affect long-term health.

Healthy choices made easy

In the midst of the excitement and responsibilities of college, Powell explained that the aim for the program is to be a simple and easy solution for students.

“The main idea behind Simple 600 is to simplify things for our customers so they can easily make healthy choices that taste great,” Powell said.

Sophomore Peter Bell, a sophomore practicing for baseball tryouts, sees it as a beneficial and easy way for him and other athletes to stay healthy.

“It could just be something good to get a little energy level going and be ready for tryouts or games or anything like that, so we don’t get too filled up or sick for games,” Bell said.

“We’d love to see Simple 600 rolled out to all our more than 400 locations in 31 states. It’s a terrific program that combines all our values of cooking great-tasting nutritious food from scratch,” Powell said.

Different than the meal equivalency program

Rall iterated the distinction between the Simple 600 program and the meal equivalency program, which is a viable option for students at the different food locations on campus.

“The meal plan equivalency is where you can use your meal in one of the retail locations such as Common grounds, Eagle’s Nest and Talon. The idea was to move traffic outside of the Caf being that there was increased enrollment,” Rall said.

Students are able to see the daily meals that are offered with Simple 600, which are posted on Bon Appetit’s Facebook.