Bookstore expands healthy snack options

One of many aisle endcaps filled with healthy treats in the FAMU Bookstore.
Photo Submitted by Alexis Gollman.

With the start of a new year, one of the most popular resolutions is to get in shape or eat healthier. But one of the dilemmas you might face is how to swap out the familiar unhealthy snacks for something that is more health conscious.

The FAMU Bookstore now offers a myriad of healthy snacks throughout the store. Students can enjoy snacks without the guilt of compromising their health or cravings.

Lisa Baertlein, a contributing writer from (a website that provides readers with health news and information accredited and medically reviewed by practicing physicians), explains in her article “Healthy Snacking Benefits” how eating healthy snacks are more beneficial than unhealthy in the long run.

“Such nutrient-poor, sugary snacks as candy bars are like fuel that runs hot and flames out. They give you a quick jolt of energy that is followed by a crash that can leave you hungry, cranky, sleepy, and unable to concentrate,” Baertlein writes. “Healthy snacks are more like slow-burning fuel that helps you keep going all day.”

At the end of each aisle endcap in the bookstore there are a variety of health-conscious foods like kale chips, sticky rice chips and chickpea puffs. There are also health-conscious beverages such as kombucha, a fermented black or green tea that has grown in popularity in recent years.

“I know everybody is on a health wave of trying to be more conscious about what products they are putting in their body, so I thought kombucha was one of those items that would be like a detox in a sense,” said Shirlisa Shutford, the front supervisor at the FAMU Bookstore. “I tried one flavor of kombucha which was the pineapple one and those sold quickly.”

Even though the FAMU Bookstore offers healthy snacks, the response thus far has been lukewarm. Some FAMU students appear to be disinterested in the alternatives to potato chips and candy bars.

“I would say the sales of healthier items they’re low … cauliflower chips or kale chips like those don’t sell at all I have actually had those on the shelf for like a whole semester,” said Shutford.

Those students tend to opt for the more familiar processed foods for snacks.

“People come in here and buy snacks and candy, and we have regulars who buy foods like muffins,” said Shutford.

Tice Johnson, a senior business administration major, enjoys the seasonal fruit that the bookstore offers.

“They have seasonal fruit, so when I was here in the fall they had a lot of grapes so I would basically come in get grapes almost every day,” said Johnson.

 The bookstore is gradually advancing and is under new management.

“Really I’m just trying to find things that will keep students coming back for more and actually buying the items that are inside the store. I’m always open for suggestions,” said Shutford.