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Sodexo, formerly known as Sodexho and headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, is the largest food-service provider in North America. Sodexo was renamed from Sodexho in January 2008 and previously from Sodexho Marriott in mid-2001. Sodexo has drawn more attention from the public after it was mentioned in the documentary Super Size Me, a film (Academy Award nominee) that exposed the health hazards of eating fast food (McDonalds specifically). Some students consider what they serve to be not so tasty, however quantitatively it is quite a deal (at least in the dining commons).

Sodexo is also branded as University Dining Services on campus.

Sodexo runs many on campus food services:

Sodexo is also available as a catering service for various campus events. Depending on the location of an event, you may be required to have them cater if you have catering on campus. See info and list of caterers approved by Campus Events & Visitor Services for more details.

Sodexo composts their organic matter, or sends it to a biogas facility.

Brenan Connolly is the General Manager of Resident Dining Services and Gina Rios is the Retail General Manager of University Dining.

Sodexo as a Fundraiser

Several SPAC-registered groups on campus are eligible to work Sodexo events as fundraisers for their clubs. Sometimes the expected outcome does not match the actual result.

Campaigns against Sodexo

In spring 2004 there was a movement by Sodexo employees seeking university employment (and thus university benefits), but it didn't go very far. In winter 2007, Sodexho workers, Students organizing for Change, and AFSCME are fighting for Sodexo employees to become university workers. This would allow for them to get better wages, more affordable health care coverage, better hours, better pensions, and respect. However, very few former Sodexo employees wanted the change. Most employees lost their saved vacation and sick pay. Student employees lost benefits and job security. Most part time employees also lost hours as part time employees can only work 19.5 hours a week and students may only work one University job. Many students who worked for Sodexo had to seek employment elsewhere so they could maintain one University job as well as another job to provide enough money to live on.

Over the 2008-2010 academic years, the Student-Farmworker Alliance at UC Davis campaigned against Sodexo for the Coalition of Immakolee Workers Campaign for Fair Food. Education in the form discussions held with students in the dining commons during the fall of 2009, and in the Education for Sustainable Living Program during the spring of 2010 as well as a protests outside of the Segundo Dining Commons in spring of 2009as part of Students for Sustainable Agriculture's Real Food Week (formerly known as Local Food Week)

University Responses



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Is any of the food supplied by Sodexho in the dining commons organic? I didn't think it was until an employee claimed that since ladybugs and caterpillars were regularly found in food items "At least we know it's organic!" A cruel joke? -AJL

Usually if the item is organic, it will say so on the menu...as for bugs in food...i think thats unlikely since all produce is washed and kept refrigerated before it is put out. -jasmin

I've seen insects in produce many times. Yes, the produce is washed, but the insects are good at clinging to leaves too. This doesn't disgust me at all, and it's not a health concern. Keep in mind that the insects are washed clean too. It's only Victorian-based society that's hyper-sensitive about these matters. Keep in mind that people in many parts of the world, today, intentionally catch insects to eat. Is that any more disgusting than eating shrimp, really? —SteveDavison

2005-06-09 22:05:17   Don't be a Sodex Ho... PACK YOUR LUNCH!! —KarlMogel

2007-02-26 12:49:01   Avoid Sodexho! Food terrible, not a great place for students to work and inefficient management. —MyaBrn

2007-05-08 09:47:55   I am surprised that the Sodexho food workers issue has not been discussed here... —MyaBrn

Yeah, there should definitely be a blurb here. Wanna add it? :)

2007-05-08 10:14:57   I was just going to say that I was a student employee for Sodexho (8 years ago) and now am a UCD staff member. My time at Sodexho wasn't great and the only thing that kept me there was the really stellar supervisor I had. I heard so many other horror stories from other student employees. But It doesn't make sense to me that Sodexho student employees want to push so hard to be considered UCD employees. In order to receive the benefits of working as a UCD employee one needs to work over atleast part-time 20hrs/week for 1000 hours. This is why students who work for UCD do Not get benefits. UCD students are also not represented by a union. It would only benefit the small number of non-student employees who work more than part-time. Just my 2 cents, I don't want any controversy, but I can see where Sodexho Employees are coming from. When I worked there it was my first "real" job and I didn't know any better. —MyaBrn

  • I think the debate has gone beyond whether to benefit a few employees in Sodexho but rather it has become the supporting of the "worker's rights" ideology. It has created a life of its own. —SteveOstrowski

2013-01-09 15:34:59   I worked at Sodexo food catering for about a quarter in '10. It was a really bad experience. I had bad supervisors, they didn't take into account that when you say your class started at a certain time, you needed toget off a few minutes earlier to go to class, and just a lot of of other issues. Also, we have been told to serve food that we've dropped and tomato sauce that was expired. If an event is Sodexo catered, stay away.

Other than that, my friends have had decent experiences at the DCs. I think catering is probably a really high stress job and that explains the shitty hours (I think there's a law about a 15 minute break after two hours of work—it's been awhile, I don't recall—but they often took it to mean, in an 8-hour work period, you could get off a half hour early), but I think it's kind of terrible that I served expired food, to a group of hundreds of RAs from around California. I hope standards have gotten better since I worked there, but it's also troubling on another level that they are really the only providers of food to campus students, though that is another political issue —HannahToru

2014-04-05 15:51:01   April 2014. Looking for more info. Woodland Joint Unified School District is considering hiring Sodexo to run nutrition. They are not privy (or so I have heard and read) to keeping our Farm to School programs intact. How can we as parents be empowered to add some sort of bylaw or pact that make sure fresh LOCAL produce is included in Nutritional programs? Whether sodexo or another company???


2014-07-13 03:36:18   Now a day, only management related are Sodexo, in other word, people with authority is sodexo. UCD hired Sodexo to manage so UCD doesn't have to do any manage related, toss all the ball to Sodexo there(so any management issue they can blame on sodexo), another UC trick shot. Despite that, the major issue with Sodexo is, the company came up with this awesome standard rule(respect employee, customer, everyone; bring out good quality stuff, etc), which seems perfect, and they enforce the employee to follow that standard, however, the management teams themselves are not doing that standard sometime; problem here is they think they're doing it. It's like with authority, people think they're the center, they're always right, typical. Anyway, some are a little better, some are worst than the other, generally the authority who's doing all the talking like they're doing exactly what the standard says, are not doing it, sometime they're like that because other situation, like budget, money, sometime they don't even realize they're not doing the standard way. So, when someone is just fake talk, others don't like that, especially if someone is your boss. Some management even reach the point that you can't even suggest something(even though they claim they're open for suggestion); when everything goes the management way, it's all good, but you bring out slightest disagreement, management says you're challenging the authority. But when issue really gets big and reach the UC office, that's when Sodexo management pulls another approach, 1st, try to find a way out by make it seems like it's not their fault, then soften their voice, so could be having a big argument with you, yelling, screaming whatever, but when UC gets involved, suddenly becomes, they're just saying this & that, almost like yell whatever never existed but they're just trying to make a small point; when there is really no way out, finally apologize for a way out. The fact is sometime they imply the employee should do exactly what the management say because management knows best is a problem right there, because there are things they don't even know, they can screw up often but when they fail, it's never their fault. This might not be the case for all Sodexo, but the Sodexo in this campus seems to suffer a bit more or less. Is this all Sodexo's fault? All I know is, both UC and Sodexo are doing whatever benefit themselves. So one minute they can be friend because they benefit each other, but as soon as benefit no longer exist, well... —Cyclonus