UBC Undergraduate Research

Branding at UBC : a look at franchises and their impact on sustainability Foo, Grace; Lau, Jenny; Lung, Karen; McNeil, Sarah; Simpson, Madeline; Siu, Michael; Wong, Matthew


There are many different brands associated with the University of British Columbia (UBC) food service system. A brand is defined as “a distinctive kind or variety” (Steinmetz, 2002). Some examples of branding at UBC are the use of Coca-Cola cold beverages on campus, different franchise outlets, and the selling of Starbucks coffee. The impact of franchises on the sustainability of the UBC campus is addressed in this analytical report. A franchise is defined as “the right granted to an individual or group to market a company’s goods or services in a particular territory” (Babcock, 1986). Generally, the owner of a franchise retail outlet must purchase the right to use the company name, purchase products from the company, and pay royalties to the company. While there are financial commitments associated with franchises, the use of a company’s name often provides selling power due to consumer recognition. The impacts of franchises are examined by comparing franchises with non-franchises. Currently, all franchises are operated by UBC Food Services (UBCFS); thus the comparison was made between food outlets operated by UBCFS only. In particular, Bread Garden was compared to Trekkers for specific analyses because both cafeteria-style outlets serve similar foods in a comparable atmosphere. UBCFS is a self-funded operation that has food service outlets throughout the UBC campus. Its mission is to “promote and support the university and the greater community by providing good food, friendly services, and value, while maintaining financial integrity through dedicated and skilled employees.” (UBCFS, 1997). In addition to UBCFS outlets, UBCFS has been introducing different franchises to the UBC campus since 1998 (UBCFS, 2001). Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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