Sodexo Opens First Star Ginger -- a Food Truck at UC Davis

October 19, 2011

Agreement between Sodexo and Mai Pham brings traditional Southeast Asian dishes including salad rolls, wok-fried rice noodles and banh mi to universities and corporate locations and a food truck to campus at UC Davis

Sodexo Opens First Star Ginger -- a Food Truck at UC Davis

GAITHERSBURG, Md., October 19, 2011 – Sodexo, Inc., along with celebrity chef Mai Pham, celebrates the opening of the first Star Ginger Asian Grill & Noodle Bar in the form of a food truck on the campus of University of California-Davis. The concept is the first stand-alone Southeast Asian retail platform for Sodexo and one of the first of its kind in the U.S. non-commercial foodservice sector. The concept brings authentic dishes inspired by Asian street foods, like Chef Pham's delicious Vietnamese toasted banh mi sandwiches. 

The Food Truck, stationed outside UC Davis' Silo Union, is open Monday through Friday and offers a selection of items from Chef Pham's Star Ginger restaurant in addition to banh mi, including salad rolls, wok-fried rice noodles such as pad Thai, and aromatic curries.

Chef Pham, a respected national authority on Asian cuisine, created Star Ginger based on the flavors and culinary insights she gathered and crafted while operating restaurants, writing cookbooks, teaching, consulting, and conducting research in Asia over the last 20 years. "The concept represents how we want to eat today—more healthfully, with a bigger focus on quality ingredients and a good measure of culinary adventure," said Pham. "I am so excited that we have started on this journey with Sodexo and to see that food truck out and about on campus."

Sodexo and Mai Pham entered a license agreement earlier this year that grants Sodexo the right to open and operate the Star Ginger concept at its various managed locations for the next 10 years. Recent studies have emphasized the effectiveness of mobile food trucks and the advantages of delivering goods and services to high-density areas at the convenience of the consumers.

"Trend data show that our guests are looking for adventuresome and exotic flavors," said Ray Torres, director of business development for Sodexo’s Retail Brand Group. "Bringing the fresh, bright authentic flavors of Star Ginger and Southeast Asia and combining it with the convenience of a Food Truck is a win-win."

"I love the high energy of campus life and am so thrilled to be part of UC Davis," added Pham. "This food truck is like our Star Ginger restaurant but on wheels. We take great ingredients and cook everything fresh. For students, they can now grab a banh mi or Green Curry rice bowl right between classes! How cool is that?"

About Star Ginger and Mai Pham

In addition to its flagship location in Sacramento, Star Ginger (www.starginger.com, www.lemongrassrestaurant.com ) currently has locations at Stanford University, UC Berkeley and UMASS at Amherst. 

Beyond her Sacramento-based restaurants, Chef Mai Pham has authored several cookbooks including Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table, which received a James Beard Award nomination and was named among the best cookbooks of 2001 by The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times; and The Best of Vietnamese and Thai Cooking, which was featured on NPR's Fresh Air and Martha Stewart Living magazine and television show. Her newest book, Flavors of Asia, a collaboration with The Culinary Institute of America, was released in April 2009 and features the best recipes from seven Asian countries. Chef Pham is a frequent speaker and guest chef at national culinary conferences, including those of The Culinary Institute of America where she is a member of the college's Asian Cuisines Advisory Council. 

About Sodexo

Sodexo in North America
Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com), leading Quality of Daily Life Solutions company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, delivers On Site Service Solutions in Corporate, Education, Health Care, Government, and Remote Site segments, as well as Motivation Solutions such as Esteem Pass. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.SodexoFoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $15 million in grants to fight hunger in America. Visit the corporate blog at www.sodexoUSA.com/blog.

Sodexo, world leader in Quality of Daily Life Solutions
Quality of Life plays an important role in the progress of individuals and the performance of organizations. Based on this conviction, Sodexo is the strategic partner for companies and institutions that place a premium on performance and well-being, as it has since Pierre Bellon founded the company in 1966. Sharing the same passion for service, Sodexo's 380,000 employees, in 80 countries design, manage and deliver an unrivaled range of On-site Service Solutions and Motivation Solutions. Sodexo has created a new form of service business that contributes to the economic, social and environmental development of the communities, regions and countries in which it operates and to the fulfillment of its employees.

Key Figures (as of August 31, 2010)

Sodexo in the World 
15.3 billion euro consolidated revenue
380,000 employees
34,000 sites
50 million consumers served daily
80 countries
21st largest employer worldwide

Sodexo in North America
8.0 billion dollars revenue
120,000 employees
10 million consumers served daily
6,000 clients
700 facilities management sites

 

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