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Healthy Vending Machines: It's NHS Scotland's Turn

Picture of a Vending Machine with custom branding

NHS England made it abundantly clear back in 2017 that they wanted hospitals in England to reduce the volume of unhealthy snacks sold in their facilities while simultaneously increasing the number of healthy snacks sold. Nearly a year-and-a-half-later, health advocates are calling on NHS Scotland to follow the lead of its English counterpart by insisting on healthy vending machines.

According to an article published by The Times in January 2019, hospitals in Scotland generate more than £550,000 annually through sales of fizzy drinks and high-sugar, high-calorie snacks. NHS Scotland has thus far failed to encourage hospitals to change things. Why? Some have suggested they are fearful of losing the revenue. However, revenue shouldn't be a problem if the results from England are any indication.

No Drop in Revenue

NHS England strongly encouraged hospitals to start testing healthy vending machines in 2018. In one trial after the next, the results were unbelievable. Not only was there no drop in revenue, most hospitals reported an increase in revenue alongside falling sales of unhealthy snacks. Here are just a few examples:

Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust earned a profit of £175,450.27 during the 12 months ending May 2018

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust earned a profit of £60,000 on just 43 machines in 2017-18

Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust made £37,000 on 34 machines in 2017-18. That money was put toward paying for patient meals.

Here's the point we're trying to make: healthy vending machines are money-makers. Despite the common belief that you have to fill vending machines with unhealthy snacks to make money, the NHS has discovered otherwise. They are not alone, either. Customers that have been with Nutrivend for any length of time are achieving positive results as well.

Healthy Vending Machines for Your Property

NHS England made a conscious decision to address the problems posed by unhealthy snacks by introducing healthy vending machines at hospitals. The plan worked. Now, health advocates are calling on NHS Scotland to do the same thing. Here's hoping they do. In the meantime, how about your commercial property?

Healthy vending machines are perfect for leisure centres and gyms – where people are already thinking along the lines of being healthier. Rather than encouraging them to reach for a fizzy drink and a chocolate bar after the workouts, wouldn't it be better to offer them protein bars, energy drinks, and other healthy snacks?

You don't run a gym or leisure centre? No worries. Healthy vending machines work anywhere as long as there's enough foot traffic. If they are profitable in hospitals, there's no reason to believe healthy vending machines wouldn't generate healthy profits anywhere you would find a vending machine dispensing crisps and chocolates.

If you'd like to learn more about how our vending machines can generate profits for your business, please reach out to us. We can't wait to show you just how profitable healthy vending can be.

Sources:

1. The Times – https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/stop-selling-junk-food-hospitals-told-as-vending-machines-swell-coffers-bcrjxzwvv

2. Rochdale Online – https://www.rochdaleonline.co.uk/news-features/2/news-headlines/122015/local-hospitals-made-over-%C2%A3175000-profit-from-vending-machines-in-just-12-months

3. Daily Mail – https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-6070745/Hospitals-make-260-000-vending-machines-packed-high-calorie-snacks.html

4. Wigan Today – https://www.wigantoday.net/news/health/hospital-vending-machines-raise-thousands-towards-patients-meals-1-9509701