Tag Archives: healthy vending machines

2016 Food Trends for Dallas Fort Worth

Tis the season for holiday treats, shopping, parties, kisses under the mistletoe, kisses under the disco ball, New Year resolutions and New Year goals both personal and professional.

vending machines Dallas Fort WorthWe at  Vend Pro are no different. As we look forward to the new year one of the things we are most intrigued by are the changing food trends in the nation, some of which will directly affect our purchasing patterns for 2016. Take a look at what the experts at Sterling Rice Group are saying will be popular this coming year in restaurants, at grocery stores and consequently (in some cases) in your Dallas Fort Worth vending machines.
Switchels – This colonial era beverage made with apple cider, vinegar and ginger offers both hydration and refreshment as well as the health benefits that come with apple cider vinegar: kills bacteria, may lower blood sugar, and help with weight loss. If you start looking for switchel beverages look in the same places you find kombucha bevearges.
Hawaiian Cuisine – Aloha Spam, musubi rice and poke.
Oysters – According to the article “Cutting-edge food trends for 2016” found in the November 2015 issue of Food Business News, “the demand for sustainable seafood has fueled a resurgence of farmed oysters, which filter pollutants from coastal waterways.” And according to Kara Nielsen, culinary director of and trendologist at Sterling-Rice Group because oysters are “easy to eat, [shareable and because] you can doctor them up if you want or have them clean” they’re becoming more and more appealing to the informed diner.

You-re-not-Greek!-Chobani-handed-UK-ban-on-use-of-the-term-Greek-yogurt
Savory Yogurt – The success of Greek yogurt and a growing understanding of global cuisines is, according to Nielsen, spurring interest in savory yogurts (think olive oil, spices, seeds, vegetables, roasted fruit), bringing new twists to very traditional cuisines.

office coffee serivce Dallas Fort Worth
Coffee Creativity – Did someone say cold brew? Cold brew coffee,the process of brewing coffee with cold water over an extended period of time (typically 12-24 hours) has become more than a hipster trend in 2015. In 2016 expect to see it more and more in coffee shops, grocery stores, beers, pretty much everywhere.
Sippable Soups – In 2016 expect high-pressure processing to do for soup what it’s done for juice.
Porridge – Think oatmeal with new grains, addition nuts and going more savory than sweet.
Wondering how this will affect your current Dallas Fort Worth vending program? Don’t be alarmed. We’re still going to keep your favorite, traditional snacks and beverages stocked and we certainly won’t be vending oysters anytime soon but you can expect to see Hawaiian flavors, greek yogurts, cold brew coffee, sippable soups and gourmet oatmeals (if not porridge) in our vending machines and micro markets soon. Call Vend Pro today at (972) 948-3431 for a free no-obligation consultation of your break room needs.

What’s Your Favorite Snack in Dallas Fort Worth?

“The rapidly evolving consumer landscape is dramatically changing Beautiful young womanthe game in the food industry,” says John Haugen, vice-president and general manager of 301 Inc., a business development venture capital firm that will work with food and beverage industry start-up companies.
301 Inc. began as a new business development team within General Mills in 2012. The name comes from the address of the original Pillsbury Mill. 301 Inc. With this legacy name as its heartbeat 301 Inc. will seek to meet “consumer needs faster than ever by combining the vision and passion of entrepreneurs with General Mills extensive capabilities.”
In addition to seeking out new brands and new products to meet growing consumer needs for healthier, natural, organic products, General Mills is not only looking at new items to drive market sales but revamping the old. Take a look below to learn some interesting facts about some of America’s favorite snack bars.
Granola-Bars1The Bar: Nature Valle Oats and Honey Bars
• Its significance: #1 bar brand in convenience stores with a 94% awareness
• General Mills (GM) Revamps:
o August 2015 the bar was made easier to bite with a crunch reformulation
o October 2015 new consumer messaging to promote that the brand has no artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners
o Fall of 2016 – expect to see new brand packaging
The Bar: Fiber One
• It’s significance: Fiber One is the #1 selling fiber bar
• GM Revamps:
o April 2016 – Fiber One Oats & Chocolate will have no artificial flavors or sweeteners
General Mills was founded in 1866. It could be easy for them to dig fiber_one_barin their heels and stick to what they’ve always known. Instead, as we rapidly approach the end of 2015 and enter 2016 they’re living out a lyric from an old Girl Scout’s song. It states, “Make new friends but keep the old; some are silver and the other gold.” It appears then that you can teach an old dog new tricks and that you can expand a company without losing what makes it, it.

As we at Vend Pro look forward to the New Year we’d like to say thank you for another year of doing business together throughout Dallas Forth Worth. We’d also like you to know that we are going to follow General Mills’ lead and continue to search for new ways to meet your break room needs in 2016. We promise we’ll keep your favorites while expanding our product line and that we’ll continue to stay on top of all the food trends affecting our industry this coming year. Call Vend Pro today at (972) 948-3431 for a free no-obligation of your break room needs!

U.S. Military Following School Snacking Guidelines

At this year’s annual Association of the U.S. Army conference one of the key topics discussed was vending machines. Well…kind of anyway.
As the Defense Department finalizes their Healthy Base Initiative which seeks to improve nutritional choices, increase physical activity, reduce obesity and decrease tobacco use on U.S. military bases, military officials are looking to make healthier food options more readily available to service members and their families.
Because revising long standing contacts with popular military base fast food restaurants (i.e. Burger King and KFC) could take years, military officials are looking for quick short term fixes including:
• Labeling menus with calorie content at restaurants on base
• Changing vending machines to meet NAMA’s (the National Automatic Merchandising Association) Fit Pick and Fit Pick Select standards
Since 2005, FitPick has been NAMA’s signature initiative that identifies better for your products available form vending and micro market channels. Easy to use, the most recent FitPick standards are as follows:

fit pick tableFitPick Select, is a component of FitPick that is specifically designed to help vending operators in Dallas Fort Worth and throughout the country meet strict school guidelines and achieve and maintain successful operations in places of education. Here are the most recent FitPick Select standards:

fitpick table 2In addition to the above nutrient standards, any food sold in schools must meet at least one of the following four criteria:
1. Be a “whole grain-rich” grain product;
2. Have as the first ingredient a fruit, a vegetable, a dairy product, or a protein food;
3. Be a combination food that contains at least ¼ cup fruit and / or vegetable;
4. Contain 10% of the Daily Value (DV) of a nutrient of one of the nutrients of public health concern in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (calcium, potassium, vitamin D, or dietary fiber).*
5. **On July 1, 2016, snack items must contain ≤200mg sodium per item

The Defense Department will be looking at all of the above criteria to see if these standards are strict enough or if an adaption to the FitPick and/or FitPick select programs will be necessary. In her presentation at the conference, Capt. Kimberly Elenberg, Director of U.S. Public Health Service’s Medical Readiness and Training Program, stated what schools and counties working on healthy programs already know, “what we have to balance is a business model that works as well as aligning that we our priorities as a service.”
If you are looking for a Dallas Fort Wort vendor for your school, county/city building, or military base call Vend Pro today at (972) 948-3431. As members of NAMA we are very familiar with the FitPick and FitPick Select standards and can help create a vending menu that is healthy, delicious and can still help drive revenue for your program.

Top 10 Employer Wellness Programs: How They Can Help You in Dallas Forth Worth

Every smart Dallas Fort Worth employer wants healthy employees. healthy woman drinking waterTo help DFW businesses keep employees healthy, corporate wellness programs have grown into a multi-billion dollar business. Vend Pro works with some of these wellness programs. Such programs offer nutrition education, preventive care, health screenings, gym membership incentives and more.
As a Dallas Forth Worth health partner, Vend Pro wants to share some highlights about 10 top corporate wellness programs in the country.
Snacknation, an online snack service provider, recently listed what it considers the nation’s top corporate wellness programs. By reviewing how these companies help employees follow healthy lifestyles, employers can gain a better sense of what a structured wellness plan will provide. DFW employers who want to have a healthy work environment will certainly want to know about the approaches these companies take. Here are summaries of the top 10 wellness programs. More information is available on their websites.
1) Marino Wellness (marinowellness.com)
Marino Wellness has three levels of corporate wellness programs for different sizes of companies. These three different plans will cover just about any size budget. Options include annual health risk assessments, monthly massage days, personal coaching, workshops and education initiatives.
2) EXOS|MediFit (mediafit.com)
EXOS|MediFit designs custom fitness centers that are eco-friendly. In addition to nutrition education and physical therapy, it offers a tactical program to help injured military personnel get back to duty, and a sports program to help athletes improve performance.
3) Wellness Corporate Solutions (wellnesscorporatesolutions.com)
Wellness Corporate Solutions provides health fairs and health risk assessments for employees. It also offers eight week-long wellness campaigns to challenge employees to strive harder in a work environment. Employers can download a form and get a closer at employee incentive ideas that can turn good health intentions into results.
4) Kinema Fitness (kinemafitness.com)
Kinema Fitness’ integrated platform – online secured software portal – allows employees to create and access their own account to view and sign-up for classes, communicate with other employees, and log fitness and nutrition tips. This online platform supports the wellness programs being implemented on-site at the client location.
5) Premise Health (premisehealth.com)
Premise Health is an on-site health care provider. It does more than just cover basic health needs; it also offers chiropractic and acupuncture services. The company focuses on improving patient, provider and client experiences. It invests in technologies that sustainably engage patients, improve the efficiency and satisfaction of providers, and allows employers to track outcomes.
6) TotalWellness Health (totalwellnesshealth.com)
TotalWellness’s goals are threefold: 1) Lower healthcare costs, 2) Prevent diseases, 3) Create corporate wellness solutions to foster a safer and more productive work environment. Services include program design and consultation, health risk assessment and reporting, corporate health fairs, health screenings, nurse counseling, on-site flu shot clinics, health education, and a wellness portal.
fresh food vending machines in Dallas Fort Worth7) WorkStride (workstride.com)
While it is not typically considered a corporate wellness company, WorkStride helps employers recognize and reward behaviors to improve employee wellness. The software platform powers recognition, incentives, and reward programs. The solution makes it easy to highlight good deeds, compensate great work, and share authentic stories that reinforce a good direction.
8) Fitbit (fitbit.com)
Many people know Fitbit as a tiny wristwatch-like device that helps people reach personal fitness goals. Fitbit also provides corporate wellness programs, helping people lead healthier, more active lives by empowering them with data, inspiration and guidance to reach their goals. The platform combines connected health and fitness devices with software and services to help people become healthier.
9) Provant Health (provanthealth.com)
Provant Health partners with businesses to improve employees’ health while supporting employers with their healthcare affordability agenda. Provant’s Life+ Program combines personalized “high touch” services with social networking tools that link rewards to healthy behaviors and outcomes.
10) Marathon Health (marathon-health.com)
Marathon Health offers onsite healthcare, primary care services, Man With Saladpreventative care, chronic condition coaching, occupational health care, ancillary services and more. Outreach efforts include healthy food drives to benefit local food shelters, educating middle and elementary school students about health and wellness, supporting Special Olympics, and providing free blood-pressure checks for seniors.
Vend Pro encourages Dallas Forth Worth employers to engage in corporate wellness programs. Vend Pro partners with DFW employers by only carrying those products that are part of what most consumers consider to be a healthy diet.
For more information about healthy snack and beverage options available to the vending industry, contact your Dallas Fort Worth vending partner, Vend Pro, at (972) 948-3431 to discuss your customized break room solution.

Good News For Los Angeles: Major Food Brands Are Jumping On The Healthy Bandwagon

Dallas Forth Worth (DFW) consumers, like people everywhere, are Healthy girlcalling for healthier food, and major brands can no longer ignore the call. In the past few months, several major brands – General Mills, Campbell Soup, Kellogg and Nestle – announced they are removing unhealthy additives.
This is good news for Dallas Forth Worth employers who have known for years that employees want to follow healthy lifestyles. As major food brands remove unhealthy additives, Dallas Fort Worth employers will have even more choices to help employees follow a healthy diet.
This month, General Mills Cereals committed to removing artificial flavors and colors from artificial sources from all of its cereals in response to consumers’ changing preferences. More than 60 percent of General Mills cereals are already without artificial flavors and colors from artificial sources.
According to a survey conducted by Nielsen on behalf of General Mills, 49 percent of households are making an effort to avoid artificial flavors and colors from artificial sources.
“At General Mills Cereals, we have been upgrading the nutrition and ingredients in our cereals for years to meet people’s needs and desires,” said Jim Murphy, president of the General Mills cereal division. “We’ve continued to listen to consumers who want to see more recognizable and familiar ingredients on the labels and challenged ourselves to remove barriers that prevent adults and children from enjoying our cereals.”
General Mills Cereals plans to have more than 90 percent of its portfolio free of artificial flavors and colors from artificial sources by the end of 2016. Trix will now use ingredients like fruit and vegetable juices and spice extracts such as turmeric and annatto to achieve the fun red, yellow, orange and purple colors.
In August, Kellogg announced Corn Flakes and Rice Krispies will soon be all-natural. Kellogg said it is aiming to stop using artificial colors and flavors in its cereal and snack bars by the end of 2018. The company said 75 percent of its cereals in North America were being made without artificial colors and more than half without artificial flavors.
untitledIn July, Campbell Soup said it would stop adding monosodium glutamate to its condensed soups for children and increase its organic offerings as part of a broader strategy to cater to changing consumer tastes.
Campbell also said it would remove artificial colors and flavors from nearly all of its North American products by July 2018, and that it would move away from using high fructose corn syrup in certain products, such as its line of Pepperidge Farm fresh breads, by the end of fiscal 2017. Most new products it is launching in 2016 also will not contain corn syrup.
Additionally, Campbell will launch new organic products, such as purees under its Plum line for kids and Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers made with organic wheat.

In June, Nestlé pledged to improve the ingredient quality and iStock_000010520105XSmallnutritional profile of some of its most popular frozen pizza and snack brands without affecting taste. Nestlé announced the improvements, which encompass more than 250 products across six brands in the U.S.
By the end of 2015, Nestlé will have removed artificial flavors from every product within these brands. It will have reduced sodium by 10 percent across the entire portfolio of six pizza and snack brands compared to 2013 levels. It will incorporate guidance tools on packaging across these brands to help educate consumers on choosing appropriate portion sizes and the importance of eating vegetables and fruits as part of a balanced plate.
Vend Pro applauds these companies for listening to consumers and making it easier for Dallas Fort Worth to follow healthy lifestyles.
For more information about healthy snack and beverage options available to the vending industry, contact your Dallas Forth Worth (DFW) vending partner, Vend Pro, at 972.948.3431 to discuss your customized break room solution.

A Steady Addiction in Dallas Fort Worth

According to a study by Gallup Inc., an American research-based, office coffee service Dallas Fort Worthglobal performance-management consulting company, the amount of coffee drinkers in the U.S. along with the amount of coffee they drink are steady, which is interesting when you consider that coffee shops are reportedly the fastest-growing segment of the restaurant industry.

Coffee shops are on the rise (40% growth from 1999-2005) while coffee consumption has been the same in similar studies ran both in 2012 and 1999. In all studies 64% of Americans consistently drink at least 1 cup a day. Here’s how that 64% breaks down:

26% drink at least 1 cup a day

19% drink at least 2 cups a day

8% drink at least 3 cups a day

11% drink at least 4 cups a day

The remaining 36% drink none

Here are a few more numbers worth mentioning:

office coffee service in Dallas Fort Worth

26% of coffee drinkers consider themselves addicted to coffee but only 10% think they should drink less. And with more and more studies showing the positive effects (improved concentration/memory, lower risk of certain types of cancers, Parkinson’s and stroke) of caffeine, there may not be a need to.

What does this mean for your Dallas Fort Worth office coffee program?

It’s simple. Keep offering high quality coffee to your Dallas Fort Worth employees to help them stay focused and feel appreciated throughout the work day. Statistically 64% of your population will appreciate this added benefit.

And although our coffee consumption hasn’t changed in volume some things have changed for taste. For instance, we now know that a large portion of the population prefers a light roast. Make sure you are offering a full line (light, medium and dark roasts) to keep your full 64% at the office for their coffee breaks.

And for the other 36% make sure you are offering a high quality tea coffee and tea service in Dallas Fort Worththat matches your coffee brand in perceived value. Tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world, second only to water and you don’t want your office tea drinkers to feel less appreciated than the coffee crowd.

Looking to improve your Dallas Fort Worth office coffee service? Call Vend Pro today at (972) 948-3431.  One of our team members will be happy to discuss improvements that can be made to your current program while sticking to your budget.

Is Your Dallas Fort Worth Vending Company Fully Licensed?

There are over 40,000 different licensing jurisdictions in the United iStock_000011116770XSmallStates. To put that number into perspective, if there was a jurisdiction for every mile from the North Pole to the South Pole you would walk around the world twice before visiting them all.
To make matters more complicated each of these jurisdictions set their own standards as to the licensing they require from businesses; standards that can vary from every county in the state of Texas. Because of these complications this blog will not discuss the specific licensing required of your Dallas Fort Worth  vending company but rather the importance of having a properly licensed vendor within DFW.

route driver3That being said there are some licenses in Dallas Fort Worth that are standard. These include:
• Federal tax ID
• State tax ID/resale permit
• County licenses
Some of these you may be familiar with in your own place of business, which is one of the reasons you should care if your vending company in Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) is licensed; it seems only fair that if you pay your taxes, so should they. However, more importantly then the profit the government makes off of businesses or the sense of what’s “fair” are the other two intertwined reasons why licensing exits:
1. Licensing keeps businesses accountable for their actions
2. Licensing holds businesses to health and safety codes
You want to work with a Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) vendor who is accountable. Honesty is a character definition and it stands to reason that if a company is honest with the government there is a higher chance they’ll be honest with you about their service and commissions you garnish off their vending machines.
Furthermore, vending offers a variety of food. If you walk into a fresh food vending machines in Dallas Fort Worthrestaurant or a grocery store you expect them to abide by certain sanitary codes. You want those establishments to be rodent and bug free, to use clean equipment, etc. By choosing a Dallas Forth Worth vending company who is properly licensed you are ensuring that they are being held accountable for the way they handle your food.
Here are some things that inspectors look for:
• Food is kept off the floor
• There are no signs of unwanted creatures
• Refrigerated and frozen products are properly stored
When choosing your vending service in the Dallas Forth Worth (DFW) area make sure they are fully licensed, for your health, for your safety, for your peace of mind, and maybe even your budget. Call Vend Pro today at (972) 948-3431 for a free no-obligation consultation of your break room needs!