More vegan, gluten-free and lactose-free options are coming to campus in April.
The Reitz Union’s Freshens, located in the POD Market, will undergo a nine-week renovation into a Shake Smart, said UF spokesperson Steve Orlando. The construction is projected to cost $327,801, which is funded by UF.
Shake Smart will offer acai bowls and signature shakes that can include more than 30 grams of protein, fruits and vegetables, Jill Rodriguez, the marketing program manager for Gator Dining services, wrote in an email. Menu items cost $10 or less.
The UF location will be the first Shake Smart in Florida, Rodriguez said.
Eddie Daniels, the assistant vice president of UF’s business services division, said UF Student Body President Smith Meyers approached them with the idea.
Meyers could not be reached for comment.
“In comparison to Freshens, Shake Smart is allegedly healthier, and that’s something that students expressed,” Daniels said.
Jowie Papa, a 21-year-old UF biology senior, said he didn’t go to Freshens often, and when he did, it was only for protein shakes.
“But if they’re people that do go there for the (frozen yogurt) and stuff,” Papa said, “I imagine they’d be pretty disappointed about that.”
Papa said the remodel won’t have an effect on him, but having more dietary options can be a good thing for students who need those food substitutes.
Roman Siddiqi, a 20-year-old UF philosophy junior, said he went to Freshens about once every two months.
He said he wasn’t upset to find out Freshens was leaving because there are plenty of frozen yogurt places in Gainesville, but getting an acai bowl is less common.
“This might be a good thing because there’s only one other place on campus that does this kind of thing, like Jamba Juice,” he said.