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 SRU Selects AVI Foodsystems, Inc., as Campus Food Provider 




Contact: K.E. Schwab  -- 724-738-2199;  e-mail:


          SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – The nation’s largest independent, family-owned food service company AVI Foodsystems, Inc., has been selected as Slippery Rock University’s dining services vendor and will take over all campus food service operations June 1.

          “In reviewing the companies that sought the SRU account, AVI presented the most creative and personalized proposal,” says Debra Pincek, director of the university’s auxiliary student services. AVI, which currently provides dining services at Wayne State University and the University of Toledo, is based in Warren, Ohio, and began as a family restaurant later branching into food vending machine operations, then into large-scale food service operations. In addition to SRU, AVI has also been awarded the dining services contract at California University of Pennsylvania.

          The company, headed by co-presidents Anthony Payiavlas and Patrice Payiavlas, reports more than 4,000 customers in a seven-state marketplace and annual sales of nearly a half-billion dollars. AVI employs 6,000.

          "We are both delighted and very excited to have been selected as Slippery Rock University's student dining services provider," Anthony Payiavlas underscores. "Our mission is to provide excellence at every level of service and, in the process, exceed the expectations of students, staff and faculty."  Payiavlas referred to AVI's selection by Slippery Rock University as one of the most significant highlights in the company's 42-year history.

          AVI Foodsystems will be the food provider at Weisenfluh and Boozel dining halls, the University Union and the University Club. It will also serve as caterer for campus events. The company will operate a coffee shop and delicatessen-like service in the union as well as Rocky’s Grille. “We expect AVI will bring with it name changes for Montagues Deli, Java City and Easy Goes,” Pincek explains.

          The company’s customer list also includes food service at Eastman Kodak, Honda of America, the Cleveland Clinic, H. J. Heinz, the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Longaberger Co., General Motors, Ford Motor Corp., and DaimlerChrysler, among others.

          Pincek explains a university request for proposals was issued last fall drawing 11 potential providers. The proposals were scored by a seven-member committee, including students, faculty and staff, with ratings given in a number of areas, including support of campus programs, nutrition education program and marketing. She notes the committee also reviewed the company’s references, facilities and financial standing. AVI was awarded a five-year base contract with the possibility of two, one-year renewals.

           SRU trustees authorized the 14-meal, food service fee to increase by the standard Consumer Price Index for Food Away from Home of 2.3 percent ($23) to $1,000 per semester beginning in the fall.

          ARAMARK, which held the SRU food-service contract for 15 years, continues service through May, Pincek explains. She says ARAMARK employees covered under the Food Service Workers Union have contract procedures in place for continuing employment, and student workers will have the opportunity to apply or re-apply for positions for fall as in the past.


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