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Which Would You Pick – Vending Machine or Fast Food?

Picture this … You’re so hungry your hands are shaking and you can hardly think straight. You have an important meeting in 45 minutes that you don’t dare be late to. You pull into your favorite hamburger joint on the way to your meeting and groan. Who knew the lunch rush would still be going at two o’clock? You can’t take the risk of the line inside or the drive-through wraparound. But as you scan the surrounding shopping center, you see the video machine … right next to two gleaming new snack vending machines. Bingo!

Five hours later, long meeting done, you drive wearily home with absolutely no desire to make the effort to cook dinner. This time, the fast-food place doesn’t look so busy, and you have all evening ahead of you anyway. You pull in for that long-awaited hamburger, sighing with pleasure at the thought of claiming a booth all to yourself.

Fast Food Out, Vending In?
Some people think there is a possibility that vending machines could boot out fast food restaurants in the market. The president of Culinary Tides, Inc. thinks the chance of that happening is “50/50.” During the recession, many restaurants closed their doors, and vending machines business slumped too. Now as the market comes back, vending is coming back too, with new innovations that are making these businesses grow. One example is the TaxiTreats company in New York City; two bright college students won a business contest with a proposal to put small snack vending machines in taxi cabs. Hurried travelers can now kill two birds with one stone – get there, and get there with a satisfied tummy.

How About the Best of Both?
Some have even suggested that more restaurants might have to create vending machines in order to stay competitive. But vending won’t just keep fast food chains afloat, it will likely propel them to even greater profits. Machines are cheaper to operate than restaurants – they don’t have to be staffed – and vending machines business can put the company’s presence in a lot more places.

So if you have wondered why the fast food place down the street has closed its doors, snack vending machines might be part of the answer. Perhaps the competition was just too much. And if the restaurant next door is still open, vending machines business might be part of the answer there too.