By Kellie Book
Food prices dropped in the Raider Grille and Sneden Café last week in an attempt from the campus dining department to combat food insecurity.
Efforts to reduce prices began last year, according to Catering Director Destiny Swanson. Swanson said that the Campus Dining team assessed the cost of producing each item and used that information to take the prices as low as possible.
“We have talked about lowering prices for about a year now. However, we just decided to reevaluate and (analyze) this a couple of months ago so that they would be in effect for the Winter semester,” Director of Campus Dining Keaton Krupa said.
Since Campus Dining is funded by GRCC, they have limited resources. That’s the reason prices will likely stay consistent in the future, Swanson said.
“These prices won’t go much lower,” Swanson said.
When asked, students were surprised and generally pleased by the news of lower prices.
“Price rollbacks? I’ll take it,” said Grand Rapids Community College student Cooper, who had never eaten at the Raider Grille before he dined there on Thursday.
The new price reductions will help more students like 18-year-old Carolanne Merlington afford on-campus meals.
Merlington said that eating on campus “would be a lot easier, I eat out a lot.”
Swanson said that the work on price reductions for the Quiet Café is also under way.
“Our goal is to do our part in making sure there are affordable options to students on campus,” stated Keaton Krupa, the director for Campus Dining, in a press release.
However, the prices may still be too high for some students. After all, a meal of chicken tenders (five of them) with fries and a drink still averages around $7 according to Swanson. Better than the previous $9 cost, but still somewhat pricey for college students on a limited income.
GRCC is aware that students do sometimes face situations like housing and food insecurity, and has curated a list of resources like food pantries and emergency shelter/affordable housing facilities. For more information on these options, visit this site.
Editor’s Note: This story was update Friday, Jan. 24 to include information from Keaton Krupa.