I've been learning a lot about vending the last few weeks. As a relative rookie to the industry it has occurred to me that, if anything rings true, it’s that vending gets a bad rap. I know what you’re thinking, captain obvious right? But really, what is the deal with everyone saying vending machines are unhealthy?
Admittedly, there are healthier options than some of the products in vending machines, but the vending industry is making strides to offer health-friendly options since all the hoopla began. Low-sodium, low calorie options have become a staple in many machines and micro markets, and as healthier snack options become available, the industry will adapt and adopt them as well.
Furthermore, vending machines don’t offer anything that isn’t offered at your local grocery store. As a matter of fact, 'micro market' sounds like a miniature adaptation of the modern day 'super market,' yet you don’t hear people crying for the elimination of traditional snacks from Pick n’ Save or Piggly Wiggly do you? So is the vending industry being punished for offering convenience? Should an entity suffer because somebody wants an easy and affordable snack in an otherwise inconvenient location? It seems silly to me that an entire industry can be attacked for offering an option to snack.
Other outlets get celebrity support
And while I’m on the subject of convenience, where is all the animosity toward fast food? Sure people protest the unhealthiness of fast food, but McDonald’s is an NFL sponsor, and Subway of the Olympics. These restaurants offer similar, if not more unhealthy options than vending machines and still get backed by enterprises that showcase world class athletes and promote healthy lifestyles. If McDonald’s and their grease and trans fats can get the support of Donald Driver and other NFL athletes, I think, at the very least, vending should be left alone.
It seems as if people will continue to oppose vending and lobby to change the way the industry has done things for years without knowing the true consequences of their actions. They will fight to have machines pulled from schools and office buildings to try to protect people from their own urges, and continue to think they know all the right answers, all at the expense of the innocent vending operator, who has diligently made an effort to provide healthy alternatives to traditional snacks, while still maintaining the salty and sweet foods that people have come to know and love. But, when all the machines are gone, and it’s 3 o’clock on a Friday afternoon, where are you going to look for your snack?