Vending machines in the US will soon be required to contain increased amounts of healthy snacks, following a new public health commitment launched by the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA).
Launched with the support of non-profit organisations the Partnership for a Healthier America and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, the commitment will require at least one-third of all snacks in a vending machine to meet “at least two publicly recognised health standards”, which would classify the snacks as ‘better for you’ products.
According to a statement from NAMA – which represents over 1,000 companies in the convenience services industry – the commitment will be implemented over the next three years, and will increase the availability of ‘better for you’ offerings by 40% when compared to current levels.
The overarching goal of the commitment is to meet the increased consumer demand for healthier choices and reduce obesity rates, the primary target of both non-profits supporting the scheme.
NAMA CEO Carla Balakgie said: “There are nearly four million vending machines serving snacks and beverages every day, 24/7, across this country.
“Vending is everywhere consumers work, play and live and NAMA regards this initiative as a bold, ambitious, and meaningful step to meet the growing consumer demand for healthier choices.”
Greg Sidwell, NAMA chair added: “In the months and years ahead, we will continue to work with our members to measure the results of this commitment to deliver a meaningful increase in the number of ‘better for you’ options in the marketplace.
“We’ll also continue to work collaboratively with public health partners, and to engage with food manufacturers to encourage them to support this important initiative through new products that meet the commitment.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020