Aramark Flips The Script On High School Dining With The Launch Of Rally Cafe

New dining brand offers students the ability to refuel, recharge and relax

PHILADELPHIA (February 26, 2020) – The high school lunch experience is about to look a whole lot different. Aramark (NYSE: ARMK), which serves nearly 370 million meals annually to more than 2 million K-12 students across North America, today announced a new high school dining brand, called Rally Cafe, which will transform the traditional high school cafeteria.


Aramark’s K-12 brand development team gathered thousands of insights from students, parents, operators and clients, to gain a better understanding of what they wanted out of high school dining programs. The findings? Students see the cafeteria as a place of social pressure and time pressure. They want to be able to get their food quickly and have time to eat with their friends.


Rally Cafe is designed as a place where students can refuel, recharge and relax with good food in a comfortable environment that celebrates their school’s unique spirit and identity. Built around two core values, real good food (quality, health, convenience and personalization) and inspired community (spirited, local, inclusive and comfortable), Rally Cafe integrates each school’s distinctive identity into the cafe logo, while vibrant food photography and positive messaging, with inspirational sayings like “You Got This” or “Together We Can,” are displayed throughout the cafe. Health and wellness clings are also prominent, featuring messages like “Healthy Body – Healthy Life” and “A Healthy Future Begins Now.”


“Rally Cafe transforms the traditional high school cafeteria – noisy, overcrowded and outdated -- into a modern day escape for students that is clean, comfortable, fun and social,” said Barbara Flanagan, President of Aramark’s K-12 Education division. “By re-imagining the school cafeteria, we’ve created an engaging environment that promotes a positive food culture and celebrates school spirit – all while hoping to inspire.”


With school spirit running high among high school students, Rally Cafe seizes upon this strong connection through branding, color scheme, and thematic signage and graphics, to further unite the student body. The term “rally” embodies the idea of school spirit and the collective community participating in the shared experience.


As part of the cafeteria makeover, Rally Cafe will introduce student-driven meal options and service solutions that offer craveable, fresh food, while maximizing speed of service during the busy lunch period, including:

  • Daily menu specials and limited time offerings, featuring seasonal ingredients and regional favorites;

  • Test Kitchen station with a weekly rotation of unique, customizable menu items and specialty cuisines, such as global tacos, BBQ and noodle bowls;

  • Fresh, on-trend grab-and-go bento boxes, salads and sandwiches that decrease time in line and allow students to maximize their lunch period; and

  • Breakfast and lunch mobile carts offering meal options at remote service locations.


Additionally, design elements such as new signage, menu boards, furniture, fixtures and finishes, will be installed to reflect the school’s distinctive spirit and identity.

Rally Cafe will first be piloted at Midlothian (TX) Independent School District, prior to being introduced for the 2020-21 school year.

Learn more about Aramark’s K-12 offerings at


About Aramark
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) proudly serves the world’s leading educational institutions, Fortune 500 companies, world champion sports teams, prominent healthcare providers, iconic destinations and cultural attractions, and numerous municipalities in 19 countries around the world. We deliver innovative experiences and services in food, facilities management and uniforms to millions of people every day. We strive to create a better world by making a positive impact on people and the planet, including commitments to engage our employees; empower healthy consumers; build local communities; source ethically, inclusively and responsibly; operate efficiently and reduce waste. Aramark is recognized as a Best Place to Work by the Human Rights Campaign (LGBTQ+), DiversityInc, Equal Employment Publications and the Disability Equality Index. Learn more at or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.


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