Bottled Water in Fairfax, VA

Bottled Water in Fairfax, VA is Here to Stay

Bottled Water in Fairfax, VA

Have you ever wondered who purchases bottled water? As it turns out, just about everyone does. According to the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) and the Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMS), “Americans are drinking more bottled water than any other packaged beverage” for the first time in American history. A recent Harris poll conducted for the IBWA found that 86 percent of people polled purchase bottled water. Additionally, the BMS recently released numbers for 2016 bottled water sales. They found that there was a 10 percent increase in sales and an 8.6 percent increase in bottled water consumption. Now, that’s a lot of bottled water.

So, what makes bottled water so popular? The answer depends on who you talk to. Bottled water offers many benefits and has the potential to meet a wide variety of Fairfax, VA consumer needs. The following are just a few of the features that have made bottled water popular.

Bottled water is versatile.

  • Bottled Water in Fairfax, VAIt can be consumed at any time of the day.
  • Water mixes well with many other types of beverages.
  • You can drink it cold or hot.
  • It can be found with carbonation or without, and flavored or plain.

Bottled water is healthy.

  • It contains zero calories.
  • It keeps the body hydrated.
  • It can improve one’s mood and focus.
  • It can help replenish lost electrolytes.

Bottled water is portable.

  • It is convenient when one is on-the-go.
  • It is easy to carry it with you.
  • Bottled water is available in many locations.
  • Disposal of the bottle is relatively simple.

Bottled water is safe.

  • It is regulated as a food product by the Food & Drug Administration.
  • Bottled water has a long shelf life.
  • An extra supply should be kept for an emergency or disaster situation.
  • It can help prevent illness when traveling outside of the U.S.

With the great demand for bottled water, it is important to make sure that your Fairfax, VA employees have access to a variety of bottled water choices during their work day. Not only will you help your employees remain hydrated during the day but their mood and focus are likely to improve if they are hydrated. A large selection of low or no sugar, flavored carbonated waters can also be a refreshing treat during a work break.

What bottled water options do you offer in your office break room? SunDun Office Refreshments can help you determine the best combination of flat and carbonated bottled waters as well as other beverages to offer in your office break room. To learn more, contact us at 800.466.2731.

Ingredients and Nutrition Labels in Alexandria, VA

Alexandria, VA, How Do You Feel About Your Diet?

Ingredients and Nutrition Labels in Alexandria, VA

Is it healthy, not so healthy, or somewhere in between? If it’s not so healthy, you are part of a large number of Americans who feel that their diet is unhealthy. Recent research by Mintel, a market intelligence agency, found that “less than half (42 percent) of Americans consider their diet to be healthy.” Yikes!

While negative dietary influences vary greatly from person to person, there is one thing that impacts the majority of Alexandria, VA consumers—being able to determine the validity of health-related claims on food packaging. As a consumer, how can you combat the uncertainty that often comes with reading food packaging?

Before looking at the packaging issue, it is important to understand what a food or health-related claim is. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) describes a health claim as “a relationship between a food substance (a food, food component, or dietary supplement ingredient), and reduced risk of a disease or health-related condition.” An example of an FDA-approved health claim that explains the benefit of calcium on the risk of osteoporosis is, “Adequate calcium throughout life, as part of a well-balanced diet, may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.” For a manufacturer to be able to include this claim on the packaging of one of their products, the product must meet a list of specific requirements.

Given that it is often difficult to know those requirements while reading different packaging, the nutrition label and ingredient list are a great resource. Ingredient lists and nutrition labels often contain a large amount of information. To better understand that information, here are a few strategies for reading them.

Ingredients and Nutrition Labels in Alexandria, VANutrition Labels

  • Determine how big or small the serving size is for each packaged item. Often the serving size is different than the amount of food or drink in the package. To correctly understand the other information on the nutrition label, knowing the correct serving size is key.
  • Understand that the “percentage daily value” listed on the nutrition label is not the same for everyone. Most nutrition labels are based on a 2000 calorie per day diet. If you are taller or shorter or male or female or 17 or 39 or 82 or super active or a couch potato, it is likely that your caloric needs are different. Use the amount listed, 2000 calories per day, and adjust it up or down based on your own needs.
  • Pay special attention to the amount of sugar, unhealthy fats, and sodium that are in a serving as those are ingredients that many individuals need to limit.

Ingredient Lists

  • Look for recognizable ingredients. If it is an item that you have never heard of or cannot pronounce, look it up or ask someone what it is.
  • Consider which ingredients are listed first or early in the list of ingredients. The earlier the ingredient is listed, the larger the amount is of that ingredient.
  • If choosing a food that doesn’t come in a labeled package such as fruits or vegetables isn’t an option, choose products that have shorter ingredient lists. (See previous tip)

Now that you are armed with a few strategies for understanding the information on packaged foods and beverages, you are ready to head out and make healthy snack and beverage choices.

We at SunDun Office Refreshments would like to help make things a little easier for everyone by offering a selection of snacks and beverages in your Alexandria, VA office break room. For more information about our products and service options, call us at 800.466.2731.

Sustainable break room options in Arlington VA

Sustainable Options in Arlington, VA

Sustainable break room options in Arlington VA

In 2017, there are many different ways to practice sustainable living at home. Individuals often use less water, think twice about who they are purchasing goods from, and reuse as many things as possible. Recycling at home also falls under the sustainable living umbrella, and is a relatively easy thing to do. Most communities offer their residents different ways to recycle paper, plastics, metals and used electronics, and many individuals actively use those resources.

Recycling

Recycling at home is an easy way to contribute to creating an environmentally sustainable community. However, if you were at an Arlington, VA local park, it wouldn’t be so easy as your recycling options would be extremely limited. Keep America Beautiful (KAB), a nonprofit organization that educates and encourages individuals to take care of their local environment, found that “only 12 percent of surveyed public locations had recycling infrastructure in place to recover the containers.”

KAB and the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group (DPS) have developed a partnership that offers grants to local governments and community organizations to help them purchase new recycling bins. In its fifth year, the program has awarded 3,400 recycling bins to organizations in 38 states. Vicki Draughn, vice president of corporate affairs for DPS, explained that “providing choices and options is central to our commitment to our consumers. That not only means making and selling a wide range of the brands they love but also increasing the convenient recycling options available to them in their favorite parks and community spaces.”

Placing additional recycling bins in public spaces such as parks, stadiums, airports, building lobbies and office break rooms is a great way to keep building sustainable communities in Arlington, VA.

Energy

Sustainable break room options in Arlington VAA different, but just as important, approach to reducing the use of important resources is to consider different ways to decrease energy consumption, especially in the office environment. Reevaluating the different types of equipment and appliances, such as computer monitors, copy machines, and vending machines, from an energy usage point-of-view will provide a more complete picture of the cost of each item. Choosing equipment that meets Energy Star ratings will not only lower electricity costs over the life of the machine, but it will also use less energy. That’s a plus for both the company’s bottom-line and the environment.

Another way to decrease energy usage is to determine which type of light bulbs are currently being used. Switching away from incandescent and fluorescent bulbs to light-emitting diode (LED) light bulbs will not only decrease energy consumption but will also likely decrease energy costs. Unlike most lighting features that turn off when not in use, lighting in vending equipment remains on. Compared to other types of light bulbs in vending machines, LED light bulbs emit light in a specific direction without substantial loss of light, and emit less overall heat—two positive features. The U.S. Department of Energy states that “today’s LED bulbs can be six-seven times more energy efficient than conventional incandescent lights and cut energy use by more than 80 percent.” Regardless of how you look at it, that’s a positive impact.

Whether you offer your Arlington, VA employees recycling bins throughout the office, or healthy snacks and beverages from Energy Star vending machines in the break room, your organization is helping to create a more sustainable community. To learn more about our state-of-the-art vending equipment and product offerings, contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Healthy Ingredients in McLean, VA

Tools for Better Health in McLean, VA

Healthy Ingredients in McLean, VA

What are the ingredients in your favorite vending machine snack or beverage? Do you know? If you do, you belong to a growing group of consumers who not only know which ingredients are in their food but also know the number of ingredients. According to Andrew Mandyz, Director of Strategic Insights at Nielsen, “There’s a shift in how people are thinking about ‘better for you.’ People are looking for back-to-basics, simpler ingredients.”

Ingredient Labels

Seeing the recipe for your snack or beverage would be the best way to learn about what is in it, and how much of each thing was used. But since that is rarely an option, there is another way for McLean, VA consumers to learn about what is in their food and drink—by reading ingredient labels. Ingredients are listed in a very specific order. The largest ingredient is listed first, followed by each ingredient until the smallest ingredient. For example, a ready-to-drink cold tea that lists the ingredients tea (water, tea), sugar, and lemon is letting the consumer know that there is more tea than sugar, and more sugar than lemon in the beverage. Nielsen found that “about 61 percent [of consumers] said that the shorter the ingredients’ list, the healthier the product.”

Online Resources

In addition to reading ingredient labels, consumers are researching health information online. Mandzy found that the number of consumers who went online for information went from 48% in 2014 up to 68% in 2016, a 20% increase. With the large amount of health information available online, and more McLean, VA consumers using the internet, it is important to know how to determine if a website contains reliable information. Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center offers some tips:

  • Don’t search the entire Internet. Start with the Johns Hopkins Medicine Health Library [or other hospital website] or MedlinePlus.gov.
  • Evaluate commercial (“dot com”) sites carefully for bias and conflict of interest.
  • Check to see if the information is current (less than three years old).
  • Look for the credentials of the author (i.e. doctor, nurse, psychologist) to make sure the information is written by a health professional.

Healthy Ingredients in McLean, VATechnology as a Tool

Using technology to track health-related activities and numbers are also on the rise. There are apps that are worn during activities such as running or walking, ones that track the number of hours slept and the quality of sleep, ones that track what an individual has eaten and count calories, and others that track heart health or healthy habits. With so many apps available, it can be challenging to find one that meets a McLean, VA user’s needs. Harvard Health Publications recommends several things to consider when looking for the right app.

  • Have realistic expectations of the technology and watch out for unrealistic claims.
  • Read reviews. Try out a few different ones.
  • Read the fine print.
  • Ask for recommendations.
  • Look for ones “sponsored or created by established health advocacy groups, medical organizations, or universities”

Reading ingredient labels, researching health information and monitoring one’s own health-related activities are just a few of the many ways that consumers can become more knowledgeable. Sharon Allison-Ottey, MD and health educator, recently expressed that “the overall trend of a more-educated consumer is excellent” especially when it comes to a person’s diet. Which snack and beverage ingredients do your consumers want to see in their McLean, VA healthy vending machines?

Contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731 to learn more about our vending options.

Breakroom Options in Washington D.C.

What Will Washington D.C. Consumers Ask for in 2017?

Breakroom Options in Washington D.C.

How are your New Year’s resolutions going? Were you able to reflect on the past, create new goals, and make a few positive changes since January 1?

According to activepause.com:

  • 40-45% of American adults make resolutions each year.
  • the top 3 resolutions are eating better, losing weight and quitting smoking.
  • only 46% of all the resolutions made will be kept after 6 months.

Health.us.news.com also states that 80% of New Year’s resolutions will fail.

The bottom line—change is hard. If it weren’t so difficult, more people would keep their resolutions, and maybe more businesses would still be, well…in business. Take Blockbuster for example.

Blockbuster was created in 1985, and for a while, it had a monopoly on the video renting business. In 2000, Reed Hastings, the founder of Netflix, flew to Blockbuster headquarters to meet with Blockbuster CEO John Antioco to propose a partnership with the multi-million-dollar company. Hastings wanted Netflix to run Blockbuster’s brand online and in exchange, wanted Netflix to be advertised in Blockbuster’s brick-and-mortar stores.

Antioco and his team turned down the deal. After all, they were the leaders of their industry.

In 2004, Antioco realized his mistake. Seeing Netflix as a competitor, he tried to compete with them. Antioco removed late fees and invested heavily in Blockbuster’s online platform. But in 2005, he was fired. His replacement, only seeing the $200 million dollars the company lost when Antioco banished them, reinstated the late fees.

In 2010, Blockbuster went bankrupt. As of February 2017, Netflix was worth over $61 billion.

Breakroom Options in Washington D.C.A few lessons we could learn from Blockbuster are:

  1. Be open to new ideas
  2. Invest time, money, etc. in exploring those new ideas
  3. Maintain a healthy online presence

SunDun Office Refreshments isn’t afraid to change with the needs of our Washington D.C. customers. We offer multiple ways to purchase items including credit/debit cards and mobile payment options; a variety of services including office coffee service; and a large selection of products including healthy snacks and beverages.

Contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731 to learn more about the options available.

Alternative Beverages in Washington D.C.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day in Washington D.C. with some Bubbly!

Alternative Beverages in Washington D.C.

If your New Year’s resolution was to lose weight and/or eat healthier, keep your commitment to yourself and choose “bubbly” sparkling water instead of champagne or soda for your Valentine’s Day celebration.

Why make sparkling water your beverage of choice in 2017?

  • It’s Healthier – Many leading brands, such as LaCroix, don’t have any calories, sweeteners, sodium or anything artificial.
  • It’s Cheaper – With many cities and counties across the country imposing extra taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages, it’s better for your budget to stay away from sodas.
  • It’s Trending – According to the Wall Street Journal’s article LaCroix Bubbles Up in Water Brand Competition, sparkling water consumption grew 26% from 2015-2016. And according to an article from Huffington Post, Sparkling Water is the New Soda, between 2009 and 2014, the volume of carbonated bottled water sold in the U.S. increased by 56.4%.
  • It’s Diverse – Sparkling water offers a large variety of flavors not commonly found in soda. Think black cherry dragon fruit, orange grapefruit, and kiwi watermelon.

Alternative Beverages in Washington D.C.This year as you work to improve your own drinking habits don’t forget to help your Washington D.C. employees do the same.

Whether you offer traditional vending or healthy vending benefits to your employees, your local vendor can stock your healthy break room with sparkling water options.

Some of our favorites include:

ICE – Started in the early 1990s in the Pacific Northwest, the ICE line now includes sparkling teas and lemonades in addition to their twelve succulent varieties of sparkling water.

Dasani Sparkling – All 6 varieties of Dasani Sparkling water are unsweetened and have no artificial flavor. They also are juice free.

LaCroix – Originating in the 1980s LaCroix has made a serious comeback complete with a whole new look. Today they are easily the leading name in sparkling water.

For more sparkling water options call SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731 today. We’ll be happy to add some healthy carbonated beverages to your Washington D.C. energy star rated vending machines with your next refill.

Mobile Wallet in Washington D.C.

Vending Machines and the Mobile Wallet in Washington D.C.

Mobile Wallet in Washington D.C.

Have you seen the Capital One TV commercial that asks, “What’s in your wallet?” It’s no longer just about what’s in the object that holds the cash and credit cards that you carry in your back pocket or handbag. It’s now about what type of wallet you use – a mobile wallet that holds a variety of credit card, bank account, and loyalty program information, or the one that holds actual cash and credit cards.

Historically, vending machines accepted only cash. As technology changed, so did the types of payments that vending machines allowed. Today, a new option is available that has the potential to increase sales at Washington D.C.’s healthy vending machines–the contactless transaction. This type of transaction is not only cashless but also credit cardless. The person purchasing a healthy snack or beverage needs only to carry a smartphone that has a mobile payment app, and he or she can quickly buy that item. Many universities and colleges have already seen an increase in the use of mobile wallets by students. Some of the more well-known mobile payment systems are Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Android Pay, but banks and credit cards are also creating their own mobile payment apps.

Mobile Wallet in Washington D.C.Do you use a mobile wallet? If you do, you are part of a segment of the population that is moving toward a cashless society. A June 2016 Gallop Poll found that fewer Americans are using cash for purchases today than they did five years ago. In November 2016, Capital One surveyed 1,805 individuals and found that 24.4% of the participants use a mobile wallet for purchases, and 63.3% of those individuals adopted the technology during the past year. That leaves 76.7% of those who participated in the study who do not use a mobile wallet. Another way to look at it is that there are 1,364 potential new mobile wallet users in the Capital One survey. Or 1,364 potential vending machine users in Washington D.C. that could purchase a beverage using a mobile wallet.

Digital advertising for contactless transactions or mobile payments also impacts the volume of sales at vending machines. A recent study by USA Technologies, Inc. (USAT) examined the relationship between digital advertising and the use of mobile wallets, specifically Apple Pay, at 35 vending machines in New York and Louisiana. They found that there was a 36.5% increase in overall sales at the machines that promoted the availability of Apple Pay. Maeve McKenna Duska, senior vice president of marketing and sales at USAT, stated, “Based on our study, we believe that when businesses and operators present consumers with the option to pay for items with Apple Pay, the number of mobile payments made and the amount spent increases.” Given the large volume of vending machines currently being used in Washington D.C. and the increasing number of individuals who are switching to mobile wallets, there is an opportunity for growth as sales typically increase when mobile payments are available.

If you are looking for mobile payment options for your healthy break room vending machine, contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Hot Tea in Washington D.C.

A Drink So Popular in Washington D.C., It Has Its Own Month

Hot Tea in Washington D.C.

January, a time of new beginnings, health awareness, and goal setting, is also National Hot Tea Month. According to the Tea Association of the U.S.A., drinking hot tea can increase blood flow for improved cardiovascular health, provide antioxidants for cancer risk reduction, and boost energy expenditure which may help combat obesity. It appears that in a month when the world focuses healthier choices, drinking more tea may be a small change that can make a big health difference.

In addition to its health benefits, tea also has a rich history, diverse flavors, and soothing qualities. It should be no surprise that in America, the third largest tea importer in the world and the only western nation with increasing tea consumption, approximately four out of five consumers drink tea.

Here are a few more interesting numbers and facts from vendingmarketwatch.com:

  • Millennials are making more than coffee “hipster” cool. Their love of tea has triggered an overall increase in Additionally, while older consumers think of tea drinkers as older, female, and soft-spoken, Millennials associate tea drinkers with younger, predominately male, and loud individuals.
  • The most popular additions to tea are sugar (46%), honey (40%), and milk (26%).
  • In the same way that coffee drinkers identify with their hot beverage, it appears that tea drinkers do as well. Green tea drinkers are likely to describe themselves as creative, adventurous, spontaneous, and bold, whereas black tea drinkers are more likely to describe themselves as creative, confident, peaceful, and intellectual.

What does this mean for your Washington D.C. office beverage service? Consider the following options:

  • To create a full menu, we highly suggest offering a variety of qualityHot Tea in Washington D.C. teas. Historically, coffee has been the star of the office, but as trends change, your break room menu should too. Consider offering at least one green, one black, and two to three herbal teas to meet the tastes of everyone in the office.
  • If you are a heavy coffee drinker, consider starting each day with a cup of green tea before your first cup of coffee. It can be a gentler way to start your day, and you will reap some extra health benefits.
  • For your office break room menu, think about adding honey packets or bears and organic milk to sweeten your tea program.

As drinking hot tea grows in popularity, it is important to modify your Washington D.C. break room options to meet the demand. Not only will your employees enjoy the benefits of drinking their favorite hot beverage, but they will also be more likely to turn to their healthy break room for snacks and beverages. For more information on improving your office coffee and tea service call SunDun Office Refreshments today at 800.466.2731.