Oct 15 2007

SAS Economists Podcast #1: Demand for Eurest cafeteria food at SAS

By Emily Yeh and David Xu:

Introduction: So today on SAS Economists podcast we come to examine the economic practices of our beloved catering service, Eurest. For the last several years Eurest has held our stomachs and their breaths, as they poured out food for the school community’s enjoyment. But how much does the community really enjoy the services provided by Eurest? Too often complaints about the variety of food or taste and appeal are expressed by students and teachers when the name “Eurest” is mentioned.

Today, we will examine the alleged gap between price and quality for Eurest’s food. We’ll try to find out whether the prices charged for cafeteria food truly reflect the costs to Eurest, or whether it is monopoly power that result in the prices many students consider to be unreasonable. Does a lack of competition result in x-inefficiency on behalf of Eurest? If students had the benefit of greater variety and the freedom to eat off campus, how would Eurest match up against greater competition? What can the company do to achiever a higher level of customer satisfaction? These questions and more in the first EVER SAS Economists podcast!

To play, click on the viewer below and wait a couple of minutes for the video to load. It will play automatically once it has buffered.


About the author:  Jason Welker teaches International Baccalaureate and Advanced Placement Economics at Zurich International School in Switzerland. In addition to publishing various online resources for economics students and teachers, Jason developed the online version of the Economics course for the IB and is has authored two Economics textbooks: Pearson Baccalaureate’s Economics for the IB Diploma and REA’s AP Macroeconomics Crash Course. Jason is a native of the Pacific Northwest of the United States, and is a passionate adventurer, who considers himself a skier / mountain biker who teaches Economics in his free time. He and his wife keep a ski chalet in the mountains of Northern Idaho, which now that they live in the Swiss Alps gets far too little use. Read more posts by this author

12 responses so far

12 Responses to “SAS Economists Podcast #1: Demand for Eurest cafeteria food at SAS”

  1. yunqimokon 15 Oct 2007 at 9:18 pm

    Fantastic, absolutely phenomenal!! The podcast itself looks so professional, the transitions are smooth and the music is integrated in a wonderful way. The information itself is artfully presented and simple to understand. The interviews fit in perfectly with the topic at hand, and the podcast definitely addresses the issue of Eurest's survival in a competitive market based on the principles of supply and demand. So in the end, despite all the "rich" students as SAS, we are still a stingy but picky lot who look for true quality in cheaper food. To be fair, this request can hardly be fulfilled by Eurest, since it might eat too much into their profits. Seniors are lucky since for them, Eurest is no monopoly; for everyone else…too bad and look forward to the future.

  2. James Tsaoon 16 Oct 2007 at 12:09 am

    I like how the podcast integrated 3 different interviews to present different point of views from the students. David and Emily did a great job at presenting the student demand for Eurest food and then considering the conditions that Eurest has to abide if changes were to be made.

  3. Melissa Boeyon 18 Oct 2007 at 10:57 pm

    Wow, this is a wonderful piece of film! I really enjoyed the way this is a direct connection to what we are studying in Economics! And most of the students interviewed probably do not take Economics, but are still using it subconsciously! This is amazing, for an amateur piece of work. 😀 The verbal descriptions and the visual aids really help students connect to the concept at hand better, and somehow, it seems more realistic than just studying articles for IAs, haha! If we observe our surroundings a lot more, we'd realize so many more things about our world and how economics relates to it, and it's pretty phenonomenal, as stated by Yun Qi! (although she was referring to the podcast, which is pretty cool too.)

    Eurest does have a natural monopoly, giving them the chance to overcharge and not have to be so cost-conscious, as there is no competition (for grades K-11, at least). Perhaps the lack of competition, even if the prices are regulated, is what causes Eurest to be inefficient in what they do. If so, what can we do to prevent that?

    (Hey, this is cool. We just learned about the advantages/disadvantages of competition in Business too!)

  4. andyxuon 21 Oct 2007 at 10:15 am

    What a sensational podcast! I am astonished by the video editing quality.

    With all the criticisms of Eurest I have heard during the past few years regarding to its price and quality, I am surprise that the school has done little to address the issue. And I do look forward to next year.

  5. Nicole Wongon 21 Oct 2007 at 4:53 pm

    I have to say, kudos on the music choice =)

    Although I eat it everyday, I've never really though of how Eurest is a monopolistic firm at our school. Usually I focus on the lack of weekly variety in food! The application of types of firms, markets and even supply and demand to our daily school life is simply amazing. Perhaps Eurest realises that it would lose all its customers if students were allowed to order off campus food, and therefore included in their contract to disallow us from doing so? However, Rendezvous and several of the nearby restaurants are much pricier than Eurest, so why are so many students complaining about the prices of food?

  6. kevinchiuon 23 Oct 2007 at 12:05 pm

    That's a great podcast. In respond to the post above, I think students complain about the price of Eurest food as opposed to the pricier nearby SAS resteraunts simply because the utility recieved per dollar is simply greater than that of Eurest food (or.. they just follow along with what everyone else says). Eurest's success seems to be based on convinience rather than the quality of their food. I mean there are alternate choices to Eurest, i.e. bringing your own lunch. But many people are too lazy to do so =

  7. Alex Goldmanon 23 Oct 2007 at 10:44 pm

    Great video guys. I found that the main reason I dislike Eurest isn't the quality of the food, but rather that it overcharges so blatantly. Eurest prices almost all of its items such as drinks and ice cream for double the price you can get them at a convenient store. I imagine this pricing scheme goes for their food as well. It's not as if we are paying extra for ambiance or service as we do in a restaurant. Convenience is the one plus of Eurest, but I don't think it's justified by a doubled price. I really don't know why I'm complaining, after all, I haven't eaten Eurest in the past month. High five for off campus privileges.

  8. Jack Loon 24 Oct 2007 at 7:06 pm

    Nicely done, nicely done indeed. I like the editing =D. I think most of us agree on the fact that Eurest overprices the food. Especially the drinks. The sports drinks and the tea are sold at around 3 rmb in convinient stores, but here at school in Eurest, they're sold for 6 rmb!! That's double the market price! The food price..isn't THAT much overpriced, but recently the price of the food Eurest serves has been rising.

  9. Richard Tuon 25 Oct 2007 at 10:25 pm

    Great job guys. I never knew how a video can be edited so well like that. We should show this

    podcast to Eurest, so they will know the demand for their food is actually pretty low. The prices for the food are just ridiculous. Everyone should start bringing their own lunch, so after a period of time, Eurest will know that they should lower their price if they want us to buy their food. And again, i think this video is nicely done. Good job.=)

  10. kevinhuangon 28 Oct 2007 at 3:24 pm

    Very good job. I can see lots of effort was put into editing and making that podcast as good as it was and even though you guys made the first podcast, it matches the levels of the ones that were made later on. Good job!

  11. Rebecca Sungon 28 Oct 2007 at 5:14 pm

    Good Job, Emily and David!! Good video editing 🙂

    Whenever I get food at the beginning of lunch, it seems like the Eurest people give not that much. But, if I were to go during the end of lunch, let's say about 15 minutes before lunch ends, they like pile on the food. Any one else see that? If they do that, why don't they just give the same amount of food during the whole lunch period?

  12. Jay Moultonon 12 Dec 2007 at 8:06 am

    I really enjoyed your film. As a competitor of Eurest I have always wondered why schools and companies choose them when they blatantly defraud their "partners" and their employees and / or students. It was wonderful that you brought these issues to light. If you ever want better quality and customer service at a cheaper price please contact World Dining by e-mailing me at jaypatsfan@aol.com.