The Scarlet & Black

The Independent Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Caroteenies, taken too soon?

By Will Hurd

Grinnellians too busy to go to the Dining Hall often stop by the Spencer Grill to grab an Outtake for lunch or dinner. However, this academic year, Grinnell Dining Services made an abrupt change to the selection offered in their to-go meals, dropping baby carrots, or “carroteenies,” much to the dismay of many students.

“I looked in the bag and I was like, ‘What? Where’d they go?’” said Victoria Barrientez ’11. “They were my favorite part of the meal.”

Currently, the meal contains an entrée, a bag of chips, a cookie, an apple, as well as a drink of the student’s choosing, but potentially no veggies. And due to budget restraints and issues with refrigeration, no alternatives to the carroteenies are currently being considered by Dining Services.

Perhaps the most pressing issue with the new menu is that if students were to consume only Outtakes, their daily intake of vegetables would fall well below the 2 and a half cups suggested for adults by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This could potentially lead to an increase in student obesity, as well as a higher risk of cardiovascular illness in the future. Additionally, the Vitamin A found in carrots can both help ward off infectious diseases by boosting the immune system, as well as improve students’ eyesight, too often strained by the excessively small text of E-Reserve readings.

When asked for comment, Dining Services staff and administration explained the menu change was the result of student feedback.

“We got rid of them because no one was eating them,” said Nicole Berry, Spencer Grill Supervisor. “They were just piling up outside the grill.”

Assistant Director of Dining Services Mary Kirk placed the blame on this publication. “We got rid of carroteenies because the S&B kept complaining about them. We are nothing if not responsive to your criticism.”

However, an examination of the S&B archives going back to 2009 does not yield a single article that was critical of the mini-carrots. The only criticism on record in this publication was from 2009 by Isabel Miller ’11, who in the Random Rants section complained that she didn’t trust carroteenies and was “ready to be grossed out” whenever she opened a bag. It is unclear to what extent this rant was a factor in the administration’s decision to remove the carrots.

For many students, any excuse is faint consolation.

“I just miss them so much. I feel like there’s a hole in my heart,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Holden Bale ’12.

This is not the first controversy in the short history of Outtakes. Introduced in 2006 with the opening of the Joe Rosenfield Center, the program replaced a more open to-go option called Grab & Go, which allowed students to pick and choose what they wanted in their meals. At that time, Outtakes was met with fierce opposition from students, with 90% of those polled expressing support for the old Grab & Go program. Their criticism stemmed largely from the lack of options—veggie or otherwise—available to students in the Outtakes meal, a problem that does not yet appear to have resolved itself.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *