Food Management Digizine - Q2 2023

Strawberry shakeup is totally sweet Sodexo’s new line of Freakshakes includes this Strawberry Shortcake stunner.


Global Inspiration King Charles III honored with Coronation Cake at Dubai resort

Tour Time

Tag along on virtual tours of three college campuses


c o n t e n t s

Letter from the editor

Tara Fitzpatrick

Senior Executive Editor, The Restaurant & Food Group

4 Bowie State U. partners with plant-based Everything Legendary Plant-based hack for East-coast crabcake bliss (by way of Cleveland) 6

7 8


Watch with Food Management

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Plant-based hack for East-coast crabcake bliss (by way of Cleveland)


Global inspiration with Food Management 10

12 Big Strawb Energy


16 Innovation is in the eye of the beholder

Coffee Break with Food Management 20

Big Strawb Energy

28 BBQ at the ballpark

Asprirus Health’s hydroponic gardens 21

Virginia Beach City Public Schools Debuts New Food Truck 25

Fresh new under-the-radar trends to watch this spring 26


30 Great Spaces

BBQ at the ballpark

with Food Management



Megan Rowe

The startup, cofounded by an alumnus, supplies vegan proteins to the campus. A startup co-founded by a Bowie State University

To kick off the partnership, the college presented a vegan burger and taco bar. Beyond that, Bowie State menus have incorporated the vegan proteins in several ways, Smith says. They show up at the BeWell station, which promotes healthy choices; in tacos and other dishes at Baja Grill, a Mexican retail outlet; and occasionally at the grill station in burger form. “We’re probably using it three to five days a week in something,” Smith says. Dishes using the product are labeled for students. “When it’s in a recipe we will put out an Everything Legendary sign, so everyone knows what they’re getting.” Everything Legendary has boosted the profile of its product on campus through shrewd marketing, Smith adds. For the official launch, for example, the company hosted a party, complete with a disc jockey and videographer, and posted clips on social media. They recently staged a carnival. And they occasionally park a food truck on campus. The student response to the addition has been positive. “We don’t have a large population of vegans or vegetarians, but those that have tried it have really liked it,” Smith says. He also expects demand for products like this to continue growing. “It seems like half of my daughter’s friends are vegan or vegetarian; we’re seeing that more and more with freshmen coming in,” Smith adds. In 2023, Everything Legendary has partnered with the Baltimore’s SEED School of Maryland to offer vegan fare during National Nutrition Month. Following the month’s theme of sustainable eating, the school served Everything Legendary burgers along with BeWell sweet potato skins and healthy berry-lime coco refreshers. (BeWell is a healthy dining platform from Elior North America, Aladdin’s parent company.) And an upcoming pilot program at Washington Adventist University

grad, Everything Legendary recently made its first foray into campus dining. Since late 2022, the Maryland college has partnered with the brand to feature its plant-based burgers, crumbles and chicken substitutes in its dining and retail operations. Everything Legendary already had an in: co- founder Danita Claytor is a Bowie State grad. But an appearance on “Shark Tank” and a $300,000 commitment by Mark Cuban, which triggered additional investment in the company, helped raise its profile and pave the way for the partnership with Bowie State. So did the brand’s retail presence in stores like Whole Foods and Target. Claytor and cofounder Duane Cheers started developing their product in a home kitchen in 2021, a response to complaints by Cheers’s mother about the lack of good-tasting burger options for vegans. The entrepreneurial venture took off quickly; within 15 months, Everything Legendary products could be found on thousands of grocery shelves. Last fall, Bowie State officials introduced Claytor to foodservice operator Aladdin Campus Dining and asked the company to give Everything Legendary a try. “We brought them on campus for a tasting, and it went pretty well. We’ve been using the product ever since,” says Rich Smith, Aladdin’s interim resident district manager.

Bowie State incorporates Everything Legendary plant-based proteins across the menu.

in Maryland, an all-vegan school, may present perhaps the ultimate challenge.

“We’re trying to create a repeatable model that we can carry to other schools,” Smith says.

Christina Coble, a district manager for Aladdin, points out that a partnership like this needs consistency to succeed. “It’s really important for foodservice directors and chefs to follow a proven process so it can be repeatable,” she notes. “You have to get dietitians and chefs to really embrace the product so recipes and nutritionals can be developed around it.” Aladdin chose some of its most popular recipes and requested they be adapted to use Everything Legendary in place of traditional animal proteins. Next came staff taste tests, then final recipes. “It’s the only way you’re going to get traction with something like this,” she says. “It’s not a sustainable partnership otherwise.” Coble says Aladdin is committed to expanding Everything Legendary’s reach into school and college foodservice—“not only because of the Bowie connection, but because they’re great people, and we want to make sure we’re doing them right,” she adds.


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The Cleveland Clinic’s Aramark Chef Josh Ingraham has crafted some faux crab cakes that have patients saying, “I can’t believe it’s not seafood!” We’re intrigued with the ingredients he turns into Hearts of Palm “Crab Cakes,” a winner of our most recent FM Healthcare Recipe Contest.


Hearts of palm Artichoke hearts Old Bay seasoning Dijon Nutritional yeast Fresh dill, parsley and chives Gluten-free panko Vegan mayo Jalapeno-honey jam


WATCH WITH Looking to be inspired... or have a good laugh? Check out the selections below to see what’s trending in digital media across the industry.

COLLEGE DINING TOURS R US Colleges and universities are using video to show prospective students and parents what they have to offer. Most parents are probably saying, “The food was never this good when I was in college!”

University of Virginia: All about UAV dine

Liberty University: Facts about Liberty Dining by Sodexo

The University of North Texas: What you need to know about UNT Dining


LISTEN WITH FM On Demand with Tara Fitzpatrick is your back-of-the-house pass to insightful, thought-provoking and fun conversations

with onsite foodservice’s leaders, top chefs and dietitians, industry icons, marketing mavens, up-and-comers, experts, and fascinating friends from all the segments FM covers.

Mike White has been at UConn since his undergrad days in the early ‘90s, when he started in the dishroom, learning all aspects of the dining program. Now, he’s putting his own stamp on it. Meet UConn’s new executive director of dining

28 min

Breaking down the process of sourcing whole animals at Montana State U

The collaborative, hyper-local meat program at MSU includes the dining team, agriculture college, area ranchers and local 4-H groups. We talk to the program’s coordinator and the chef to learn about the process from ranch to dining hall.

18 min

K-12 by Elior’s first Chef on the Road travels to rev up school kitchens

Chef Camilo Garavito has lived, studied and cooked all over the world, and now he’s focused on Wisconsin schools as a regional chef, bringing ideas and energy to Elior’s scratch kitchens, meeting students and generally bringing a beam of culinary sunshine.

20 min




Meanwhile in Dubai, to commemorate the crowning of King Charles III, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal at luxury resort Atlantis the Royal is cooking up a Royal Cooking menu, a five-course tasting experience inspired by dishes served at coronations of history, from Henry V in 1413, George IV in 1821 and Elizabeth II in 1953 (the longest reigning Monarch in English history). Dishes include the famous Coronation Chicken Tart with apricot, raisins and smoked almonds (from 1953) and an intricately piped Coronation Crown Cake (pictured) from Dubai cake shop Little Venice Cake Company.


Build Small to Think Big Seeking operators and developers to continue IHOP’s growth in non-traditional venues nationwide with varied incentives for development.*

We o er: • Flexible floor plans that fit each unique space

• A specially selected menu of IHOP favorites and craveable menu items to serve the venue’s needs and operational feasibility of the space

• Portable menu items for convenient on-the-go dining • Menu to suit all-day breakfast and for all dayparts Interested in this exciting opportunity? Contact Us


*Subject to Franchise Agreement and Development Agreement Terms © 2023 IHOP Franchisor LLC. This is not an offer to sell a franchise. An offer can be made only by means of a Franchise Disclosure Document that has been registered and approved by the appropriate agency in your state, if your state requires such registration, or pursuant to availability and satisfaction of any exemptions from registration.


Hopefully the spring season brings cartons and cartons of fresh strawbs, the sweet and juicy harbinger of spring, perched atop a cloud of whipped cream and a thick slice of shortcake. This is what onsite chefs’ spring strawberry daydreams are made of.

Strawberries have come a long way. The first mention we can trace of strawberries is between 234 and 149 BC, when a Roman senator touted the medicinal uses of the plant, according to research from North Carolina Strawberries.

Chocolate-covered strawberry croissants These beauties were created by General Mills Foodservice using

chocolate drizzle, fresh strawbs and yogurt-based strawberry mousse.


The 12th Century wasn’t great for strawbs. That was when Saint Hildegard Von Binger, then an abbess, started the rumor that strawberries weren’t fit to eat, since they grew close to the ground (huh?). Hildegard thought the fruit was contaminated by snakes and toads. What did the snakes and toads do to Hildegard, anyway?

RIGHT: Strawbs take the cake American Dining Creations Chef Jon Pye does a whole lot with strawbs, including this bright and cheery yet oh-so-fancy chocolate-strawberry cake with toasted meringue for a big event. BELOW: Strawberry Shakeup Sodexo’s new line of Freakshakes include Strawberry Shortcake and Strawberry cookie butter. Even cooler? These shakes are plant based.


Adventurous explorer Cartier found strawbs in Quebec in 1534 and brought them back to France. A gardener at Versailles wrote a guide for growing strawberries. By the 1800s, the fruit could be found at a London fruit stand, probably foraged, not farmed. “Hudson” was the first strawb variety in the U.S., and Cincinnati, Ohio growers were the first to ship strawberries using refrigeration (just ice placed on the boxes, but it worked).

That brings us to the chef’s refrigerator of today.

ABOVE: Sweet Tarts ADC’s Chef Pye makes his version of pop-tarts with strawberry cream cheese, Nutella and pistachio. A perfect spring snack if we ever saw one. LEFT: Shoot for the strawbs! For a savory, cocktail party-ready take on strawberries, Pye whips up strawberry bloody mary shooters with spicy shrimp and pea shoots.


Fresh K12 content from


Scott Reitano | Reitano Design Group

“In an industry that still cooks over fire, I began to question what really counts as innovative.”

I was in Orlando for the NAFEM Show earlier this year. This is the foodservice equipment industry’s marque, bi-annual event. After a four-year absence, everyone was truly excited to be together and to see what the manufacturers were ready to show-off. The foodservice

equipment manufacturers were equally as excited to have a live audience to share the “features, advantages, and benefits” of their latest and greatest products. The term “innovative” was thrown around quite a bit throughout the three-day show. It was applied to anything from robotic arms to pizza ovens to hot fridges. The term also covered automated salad dispensers, induction burners, speed ovens, and combi ovens. Additional unattended food sales opportunities, expanded ventless


the same footprint by using vertical space more effectively. It might be distributed dining that brings the food closer to the students throughout the building and throughout the day. Perhaps it is a new way to increase accessibility for those in need financially or who suffer through food insecurity. It could be an avenue to receive safe food. (Think: food waste reduction and the repurposing of food safely and efficiently.) Provides an opportunity to entice people to eat healthier. We all talk a healthier game than we eat. In other words, no one eats completely healthy all the time and every day. We do not need to scream, “EAT HEALTHIER” at every turn. However, we do have the opportunity to impact the health of children by how we prepare, cook, and serve food. Gen Z, and Gen Alpha behind them, is asking for more transparency and authenticity in what they eat. Innovative teams are highlighting fresh, healthy food options. They are doing this in how they display the food and where they place the food in the serving sequence. Innovators are using more on-site preparation and they are “finishing” menu items in front of the customer. Maximizes operational flexibility. Innovation shows through in foodservice equipment and accessories that do more than one thing well. A cooler that can also be a freezer. Shelving that easily converts, morphs, and adjusts as needed. Cooking equipment that does not require an advanced degree to program or change modes. Serving equipment

technology, and new shelving units were also touted as innovative. In an industry that still cooks over fire, I began to question what really counts as innovative. Certainly, it cannot not just be that if it is new it is innovative. Or, because the manufacturer says it is innovative, it must be - right? For my own sanity, I decided to put some parameters around what I consider to be innovative. Here are some of my thoughts: Does more with less. Does the innovative product or practice allow the operator to do more with less? More food production with less labor? How about display more menu items in less space? Does it lead to more capacity for less dollars in a particular piece of equipment or area of the kitchen operation? Increases accessibility to food. Does the innovative product or practice allow the operator to expand their reach? That could be through ease-of-payment allowing for better throughput in a serving space or ease-of- placement that provides more food options in




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“Successful, progressive, and life-changing people-centric school organizations have a approach to innovation.”

that allows for hot, cold, or frozen food presentation. Can it go vertical? Can we hide it in a cabinet or credenza? The operator wants to preserve food, transport food, and store food in one vessel, too. Impacts the human experience. I would argue that it is the most important

point and place to be innovative. Successful, progressive, and life-changing school organizations have a people-centric approach to innovation. Within our firm, we speak about taking care of each other and together taking care of our clients and their customers. That has led to high levels of innovation on our team. That has, in turn, brought unique solutions created with our clients and design partners.

Let’s all look for innovative ways to promote healthy engagement within our organizations, within our own sphere of influence, and within the school foodservice community, as a whole. If we provide space for our teams and our colleagues to thrive, high levels of innovation, collaboration, and creativity will surely follow. The products we produce, the services we provide, and the solutions we offer will be better and more innovative every time.

What does innovation mean to our operations? Check out this article interview with Scott & Marlon Gordon from NxtGen Network now!

Ready for more K12 content? Subscribe to Served Digizine today!


Sip a local roast with us. Take a nibble on a chocolate-almond croissant or a Homer Simpson- worthy donut. It’s time for Coffee Break, where we look at coffee concepts, flavors and extras that make us wake up and take notice.


Back in January, Ohio University Culinary Services opened Life is Sweet on the ground floor of Baker Center on the brick roads of the Athens campus.

Life is Sweet features sweet and savory goods (check out those donuts!) and local coffee by Dirty Girl Coffee.

Chocolate almond croissants—those three words could get a person out of bed on the earliest morning. Photo Credit: General Mills Foodservice

Cura-managed Texas Health Frisco’s coffee bar serves Ascension Coffee from a local Dallas brewer known for its rich, roasty beans and farm-to-table focus.



Tad Wilkes

Aspirus Health’s hydroponic gardens a prescription for wellness.

Often, hospital cafeterias can foster a benign, if not uneasy atmosphere, existing merely as a practical, onsite dining option for harried staff and worried visitors. But across the Aspirus Health system, cafeterias and other spaces have taken on the role of oasis—cultivating healing physically and mentally. Aspirus serves communities through four hospitals in Michigan and 13 hospitals in Wisconsin, as well as at 75 clinics and through home health and hospice care, pharmacies, critical care and air-medical transport, medical goods, nursing homes and a broad network of physicians. In 2018, Aspirus launched its Sustainability Initiative systemwide to implement sustainability initiatives intended to improve the lives of patients and the health the communities they serve. The program’s goals include reducing each facility’s carbon footprint by 80% and energy costs by 50%, as well as maximizing green health, by 2030. To that last goal, within the Sustainability Initiative is a mission to grow and serve healthier food. “Under that umbrella, each individual hospital has a green team, led by employees who are empowered to work on projects they feel are important for their specific facility and community,” says Lindsay Jenson, co-chair of the green team at Aspirus Keweenaw in Laurium, Mich.


“These are pretty awesome goals to reach for,” says Jamie Bourgo, also a member of the Keweenaw green team. “One of the biggest things I enjoy about the program is working for an organization that cares about the health in its communities—not just within our hospitals.” Though each location’s team has considerable license to determine their facility’s needs, one foundational decision Aspirus corporate made was to utilize hydroponic gardens, enabling year-‘round production. The company chose the Flex Farm, a scalable, indoor, vertical hydroponic technology made by Wisconsin company Fork Farms. But beyond that common hydroponic concept, each hospital is free to determine what to grow and how to run with the program.

“Next, we want to try tomatoes and cucumber,” Jenson notes. In addition to salads, the romaine is also used for hamburger day, and the Keweenaw green team is growing parsley they plan to use to garnish patient food trays. Though the hydroponic systems require an equipment investment, no extra staff are needed to tend them. The green team has a Vertical Garden Subcommittee (which includes Jenson and Bourgo), and each member maintains the gardens at their respective locations. “It really takes very little time,” says Jenson. “It’s maybe an hour on average per week for each

garden at each hospital. Harvest days may take two hours, but on a daily basis, checking on the pH and nutrient levels just takes a couple minutes.” The kitchen staff rolls prep of the produce into their daily routine for cafeteria foodservice, and the subcommittee members bag up dishes that are given out beyond the dining room walls. Serenity Now The benefits of implementing the gardens extend beyond sustainability and nutritious dining. At Aspirus Keweenaw the hydroponic garden is publicly visible in the

cafeteria. At Iron River, it is in the cafeteria, as well, while at Ironwood the garden is located in the “Serenity Room,” a space created during the pandemic—where staff can decompress while hearing water flow in the garden and enjoy the garden’s bright, vibrant colors and herbal fragrances, with soothing music. These relaxing effects, Jenson says, are a reason Fork Farms also supplies hydroponic gardens to schools, where students also get an education in sustainable healthy food production just as Aspirus patients and staff do.


Babylon hydroponic micro-farm grows in Central Lynchburg General Hospital cafeteria

“We have the support and backing of the Sustainability Oversight Committee at the system level,” Jenson says. A New Leaf In the infancy of the hydroponic initiative, each hospital started simple, growing leaf lettuce before transitioning into romaine lettuce and herbs, some spring mix and kale and parsley.



A school farm teaches regenerative farming practices—and kids get to eat the results

“With our long winters, when you haven’t seen the sun for a month or two, the mental health benefits are really helpful,” Jenson says. The visibility of the garden also keeps staff and visitors aware of the initiative and features signs telling them what is growing. A bulletin board in the cafeteria line also features information about the program. Jenson says they’re also working on adding labeling to pre-made dishes, such as salads, denoting that all the lettuce is grown onsite. “One of our most popular items is the caprese salad, so we grow a lot of basil for that,” she says. “We want to add a sticker with more information, for employees as well as any visitors in the cafeteria. We also include information about what we’re growing in our newsletters.” Prescription-Grade Salad In the summer of 2022, Aspirus kicked off its Prescription for Health Program (FVRx). When a doctor or healthcare provider believes a patient with a chronic health condition, such as diabetes, would benefit from eating more fruits and vegetables, the doctor can give them a prescription for vegetables—a voucher the patient can use at local farmers markets. When the program resumes in the summer of 2023, patients now also will be able to use the vouchers at Aspirus hospital cafeterias for dishes made from hydroponic garden ingredients. “We also provide them access to information on how to buy, store and consume local produce and tips and strategies for feeding their families more fruits and vegetables,” Jenson explains. In addition to improving health and wellbeing for those dining in Aspirus cafeterias or taking a breather in a Serenity Room, the Sustainability Initiative also radiates positive vibes for those carrying it out. “It’s so great to work for a company that values environmental sustainability,” Jenson says. “It’s fun too—a nice little break from our day-to-day jobs.”


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Colleges & Universities • Hospitals • K12 Districts • Senior Living • Business & Industry • Hospitality


Marygrace Taylor

Mobile option serves up scratch-made food while easing cafeteria lines

At Virginia Beach City Public Schools, home-cooked meals are now being served on wheels. The 86-school district, which serves 65,000 students, recently launched the VBScratch food truck, which serves scratch-made fare at lunchtime. “Our goal is not only to serve our students tasty, healthy, and scratch- cooked meals, but also to provide them with nutrition education so they can build lifelong healthy habits,” says Viorica Harrison, Virginia Beach City Public Schools Office of Food Services Director. “The food truck is another creative school serving line and a vehicle to promote school nutrition programs and increase student meal participation.” VBScratch, the district’s scratch-cooking initiative, has been running since 2017. When an opportunity came up to purchase and retrofit a used white pony truck from the city’s Department of Transportation, the district jumped at the chance to transform it into a food truck that could serve lunch at the district’s 12 high schools. Cafeteria lines at the high schools, which each had between 1,500 and 2,000 students, were long, and there wasn’t always enough time for students to eat after getting their food. “We thought, we could start using the food truck as an extra service line and invite some of the kids to eat outside in the courtyard,” Harrison said. To purchase the vehicle and convert it into a food truck, Harrison and her team obtained grant funding from No Kid Hungry and the Hansen Family Foundation and were allotted additional money from school funds. Then the pandemic hit. As was the case in so many

school districts nationwide, many Virginia Beach City Public School students relied on cafeteria meals as a key source of nutrition. With in-person school closed, the truck was utilized to deliver meals to underserved families who otherwise may not have had access. Eventually regular in-person sessions started back up. And Harrison and her team resumed their food truck plans. Once the conversion process was complete, “we ended up with this amazing food truck that’s a representation of our cafeteria kitchen,” she says. “We have warmers, a generator, a fridge, a griddle a two- compartment sink, a combi oven, and the table we serve everything on.” The truck is also equipped with WiFi, which makes it easy to maintain the cashless transaction system and access information about student lunch accounts (like who has free lunch status or a food allergy). The intent, Harrison explains, was to have a food truck kitchen that could function entirely on its own. “It’s set up to be a school kitchen, so we can make the same thing we’re making in the cafeteria,” she says. (For big events, though, they’ll sometimes prep food ahead of time in the cafeteria.) The food truck made its debut at Green Run High School on April 5 after passing its inspections. The goal is to stop at a different high school each week and serve the same from-scratch meal being offered that day in the cafeteria. “We’ll coordinate with the cafeteria, so we’ll bring the truck over on days when we know we’ll be serving something that’s easy for us to make on the truck,” Harrison says. Grab-and-go options like pulled pork

Virginia Beach City Public Schools foodservice staffers beside the VBScratch food truck on opening day.

sandwiches, tacos, quesadillas, loaded tater tots, and pizza are popular menu items that are also easy to prep on the truck. The warmers also make it possible to serve their from-scratch macaroni and cheese with smoked paprika. The truck is currently operated by three existing foodservice staffers. Harrison is hoping that next year’s budget will allow for two positions specifically allocated for the food truck. “But if not, we can make it work with folks who are already employed,” she says. Only a few weeks into its run, the VBScratch food truck has already proven to be a big hit. “The students think it’s amazing. They think the food from the truck tastes so much better, which is funny because it’s the same,” says Harrison, adding that she’s been meeting with students to get more ideas for future menu items. The goal is to ramp up high school visits to two to three times a week, and hopefully, to continue the program through the colder winter months. “If we get some requests from the middle school and facility has the outside space to accommodate us, we’ll also go there,” Harrison says.




According to Datassential’s Spring Trend Report, these flavors and ingredients index higher on spring menus compared to other seasons. Sweet!












Produce to plate in inches, not miles HYDROPONIC FARMING + FOODSERVICE

Innovate foodservice program with the most efficient vertical farm on the planet. Foodservice leaders across the country are controlling their supply chains and bringing the freshest greens possible to students, patients and more with Fork Farms. your

BBQ at the


FM’s Spring Preview of ballpark food proves that the pitmaster of the ballpark is the real MVP.

Slow-roasted beef top round is rubbed with Boog’s famous spice blend and smoked in-house on Eutaw Street to a perfect medium rare, then served atop a corn-dusted Kaiser roll with choice of condiment and baked beans. (Concessionaire: Levy) BOOG’S PIT BEEF WITH BAKED BEANS (ORIOLE PARK AT CAMDEN YARDS, BALTIMORE)


TOSTITOS chips are topped with a choice of BBQ pulled pork, chipotle chicken, or taco beef, then served with shredded lettuce, green onions, salsa verde, queso blanco, cilantro lime sour cream and shredded cheese. Concessionaire: Aramark SHAREABLE NACHOS (KAUFFMAN STADIUM, KANSAS CITY)


Beecher’s Mac & Cheese are topped with onion tanglers and B&G pickles. Concessionaire: Aramark


This empanada is stuffed with slow-smoked chicken and roasted peppers, then drizzled with cilantro aioli. (Concessionaire: Levy)


Great Spaces

Museum Kitchen

Sodexo Live! has formally announced the opening of Museum Kitchen, an expansive new food court located on the lower level of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, one of the largest science museums in the world. The state-of-the-art kitchen and vibrant new dining area expand museum guests’ options, which range from kid dishes to heartier meals with fresh ingredients sourced from area and minority-owned suppliers whenever possible.

Do you know of a great space to highlight? Send photos and information to to potentially be featured in Food Management.

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