WestWays Vending responds to latest news on rising obesity levels
Pree Statement from the Automatic Vending Association (AVA) 18th February 2013
Following the publishing today of the Measuring Up Report by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, the AVA (Automatic Vending Association) is calling on decision makers to recognise that vending can and should be, part of a healthy balanced lifestyle.
Vending enables 24 hour unattended retailing and, as such, allows for the provision of refreshment, both beverages and food, where other outlets would not be viable e.g. shift based workplaces, hospital staff areas and transport hubs. AVA members also operate under a very stringent Quality Standard thus guaranteeing quality and hygiene of any purchases made.
The AVA has always advocated and supported healthy balanced lifestyles – facilitated through education and choice. The low proportion of calories purchased through vending outlets (estimated to be <1% of the total average diet), is relevant in the context of discussing obesity. Further, 80% of all purchases made through the vending channel are hot beverages.
However, the vending industry is constantly looking at ways it can extend and improve the choice it offers customers. For example in June (11th – 13th) AVEX is taking place at the NEC, Birmingham, where the AVA and its members will be promoting and supporting healthy lifestyles. As part of AVEX a ‘Being Healthy’ conference is also being held by industry experts. Speakers will showcase innovative vending solutions that support health and wellbeing initiatives in a range of settings.
The AVA is also welcoming BA Culinary Arts Students from the University College Birmingham to AVEX, as they present their new products that deliver healthy vending solutions. These products, which the students have been developing as part of their final year project, address many consumer concerns for foods in general, including lower salt, fat and sugar, free-from, locally sourced, sustainable and environmentally friendly.
The AVA would also like to recommend the reintroduction of healthy vending back into schools, in order that Head teachers can regain control over the dietary choices of their students, as opposed to children frequenting local fast food outlets or convenience stores. These are just some of the proactive activities the vending industry is implementing to ensure it continues to meet consumers’ needs and fulfills its place as an important part of a modern lifestyle.