Eating & Drinking | FAQ


Questions & Answers

In order to be up-to-date all the time we regularly conduct satisfaction surveys in our dining halls. Because only with the help of our customers’ feedback we can further improve.

Through the survey we also would like to get to know what is important to our customers and what kind of questions they have. On the basis of our last survey we have set up the most important facts about the most frequently asked questions:

How does the reusable system work in the dining halls?

We have created a separate FAQ list for the reusable system, which can be found here.

On which basis is the serving size determined?

Each of our meals is prepared according to a calculated recipe. The serving size is based on the average daily nutritional requirement of an adult. As every canteen kitchen, Studierendenwerk works with standardized calculations. Therefore, it is not always possible to adjust the portions to individual requests.

Can I pay for two dishes with my card?

It is stipulated by law that every student may eat one highly subsidized meal per day. If students wish to buy a second highly subsidized meal for themselves, an additional fee of €1.50 will be charged. Therefore, you can pay for a fellow student if he/she has forgotten his/her card and the student price will be charged.

Why are the portions sometimes different in size?

The service staff use standardized serving cutlery (ladles, tongs, etc.) of uniform size. As the meals are served manually the portion sizes can be slightly different.

Do I get a second helping?

In the highly subsidized food area, every student is entitled to a free supplement (side dish with sauce). For this, it is necessary to present the card at the cash desk.

How is the menu created?

The seasonal eight-week menus are written by our product management and our chefs. That is a real challenge considering that up to 13 000 dishes are served every day and many factors need to be reviewed: for example the capacity of the kettles, our suppliers’ offer, culinary trends as well as different tastes and eating habits of our customers.

Special training courses and trade fares keep us up-to-date. International dishes, e.g. Mediterranean or Asian cuisine, make the menu varied and create a mix of food styles. In order to develop and improve the menu we are happy to receive feedback from our customers.


Why are dishes sometimes sold out?

The food is purchased on the basis of statistics and experience. Unforeseeable factors such as sudden changes of the university timetables or weather conditions can lead to more customers than expected. Of course, we always try our best to provide enough food for our customers without producing too much food waste at the same time.


Why is the price of the wok with/without meat the same?

As far as the pricing of the wok is concerned, we make sure to replace the meat with the appropriate portion of vegetables in the vegetarian version. The fact that food prices have increased significantly is something we notice especially with fruits and vegetables, and we have to take that into account in the calculation as well.

What is the vegetarian/vegan offer?

According to our sales figures, approximately thirty percent of the dining hall customers are vegetarian/vegan. Therefore, we offer vegetarian variations of the wok dish as well as a veggie burger. In addition to the vegetable and salad buffet there is a vegetarian dish on the menu every day. For our vegan customers we offer vegan dishes to choose from (stew or vegetarian dish) every day. The offer of vegetarian/vegan dishes will be expanded in the future.

Can I bring my own cup to drink from in the dining hall?

Yes, you can drink the hot and cold drinks you purchase from your own reusable cup or use our environmentally friendly MensaCup

What is our disposable tawe away dishes made of?

Our disposable containers are made of "bagasse". This material is leftovers from the squeezing of sugar cane. Our bagasse food containers are compostable and biodegradable, so they can be disposed of in the organic waste garbage can.

Why are there no more nutritional information? When will they be available again?

The reliable and correct nutritional value of a dish requires fixed recipes and preparation methods that are accurate to the gram. However, both requirements cannot always be met in a cafeteria kitchen.

Compared to classic system catering, which always offers the same dishes, in the refectory we produce a wealth of meals that change daily and whose recipes we are constantly developing. We also take care to avoid wasting food and to reprocess leftover ingredients. This can lead to dishes being prepared spontaneously and deviating from the menu. In addition, there are different processing procedures in the individual facilities, which can cause variations in the recipes.

All this makes a reliable nutritional value calculation very complex and time-consuming. Since we do not provide rough or theoretical information, but prefer to remain creative and flexible, we will refrain from calculating nutritional values for the time being.

However, due to the high demand, we are still looking for a presentable solution.