In the past, most wellness programs focused on screening and education to encourage individual behavior change and better health. Today there is increasing evidence that true and lasting behavior change is best achieved when education is also paired with an environment that supports healthy choices. Cafeterias, snack carts, and other food service options are key to creating healthy food environments at work. Healthy vending offerings can also have a substantial impact. Not only do the majority of work sites have vending machines, but recent studies have shown that:
Other useful materials and the entire worksite food environment toolkit can be downloaded from the Education & Tools page.
The Nutrition Facts label gives values PER SERVING. In the sample below, the total package contains two servings and TWO TIMES the values given for each nutrient
Below are the important values to look for on a Nutrition Facts label.
*To calculate Calories From Total Fat Per Serving:
Divide fat calories by total calories and multiply by 100 (110 fat calories/250 calories × 100 = 44% of calories from fat).
|Sample 1 - Healthy Vending Machine Sample Policy||Sample 2 - Vending Policy Template|
|Vending machine inventory tool.pdf|
As more companies undertake worksite wellness initiatives, it is inevitable that vendors will receive more requests for healthy vending choices. Although a common belief among vendors is that healthy items do not sell, research suggests otherwise. In a study conducted by the University of Minnesota, low-fat snacks were added to vending machines in 12 worksites. Price reductions of 10%, 25% and 50% were then introduced. The result? Percentages of low-fat snack sales increased by 9%, 39% and 93%, respectively. And just as importantly, average profits per machine were not affected by the changes.
Vendors who take it upon themselves to provide a healthy vending program are likely to be successful in attracting more customers as demand grows. Listed below are a few ideas to consider in creating a healthy vending program.
One local vending company successfully started a healthy vending program with one of their customers. The cost of healthier items was lowered to 40¢, versus 75¢ for less healthy items. The company supports the difference in cost. Employees are happy and the vendor is able to move products.