Arlington, VA Free Vend

Free Vend in Arlington, VA Offers Multiple Benefits

Arlington, VA Free Vend

Everyone needs to feel appreciated, including Arlington, VA employees. Providing free vend in the workplace break room is just one way to express employee appreciation. While each organization in Arlington, VA has a different culture, there are several things that create a universal feeling of appreciation and are enjoyed by almost everyone.

How to Show Appreciation

The first one applies specifically to the break room. Ask for your employees’ opinions about which snacks, beverages and fresh food they would like to have available in the free vend. 

Also connected to the break room, would be to survey everyone about the type of environment or vibe they want in their break room. The right combination of refreshments at no cost plus a welcoming environment is sure to encourage employees to stay on-site when they need to re-hydrate or grab a bite to eat. 

The next three ways to show appreciation don’t have to be connected to the break room, but they can be. Offer employees special treats or meals that aren’t usually available in the break room such as ‘Waffle Wednesday’ or ‘Freshly Baked Cookie Friday.’ Donuts from a favorite bakery or popular pizza are also great options.

In the non-food arena, giving employees who have gone above what was expected extra time off acknowledges their effort and time. Not acknowledging their time and effort can silently convey to everyone that they, the employees and their coworkers, receive no benefit for putting in the extra work.

Another way to express appreciation is to perform random acts of kindness. Everyone has heard the story about one person in line purchasing a coffee for the person behind them. To the person who received the coffee, the experience was a random act of kindness. The same can be done for your Arlington, VA employees. A simple thank you note or someone’s favorite snack are acts of kindness that show appreciation.

Arlington, VA Free Vend

Why Show Appreciation

At the surface, expressing appreciation for your Arlington, VA employees improves engagement, retention and motivation, especially during the holiday season. But dig a bit deeper and see a positive impact on employee work/life balance. 

In a recent article published by O.C. Tanner, “Showing gratitude can increase a person’s wellness, increase better sleep habits, increase metabolism and lessen stress. This directly impacts work results and employee interaction. With employee appreciation, you’re not only boosting performance and engagement, but the employee’s well-being and health.”

Drill down a bit further to the core and find that increased appreciation causes more positive interactions which then has even more positive ripple effects moving outward. That sounds like a good thing for everyone.

While SunDun Office Refreshments can’t perform random acts of kindness directly for your Arlington, VA employees, we can help you customize the perfect break room. Whether it’s free vend or coffee service, your employees will know that you appreciate all that they do. For more information, please call SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Vending Options in Fairfax, VA

Fairfax, VA, Celebrate National Vending Day Every Day

Vending Options in Fairfax, VA

March 7, 2019 was NAMA’s inaugural celebration of National Vending Day, a special day set aside to recognize those who make, sell and enjoy vending machines and the products they offer. Whether we realize it or not, the vending industry has played a role in our lives at one point or another, from the vending machines in a break room to the highway rest stop and everywhere in between. In fact, the impact of the Convenience Services industry, which the vending industry is part of, is larger than most of us realize and has had an economic impact of close to $25 billion. Now, that is something worth celebrating.

Instead of waiting until March 7, 2020 for the next celebration, celebrate vending machines and your Fairfax, VA employees every day. Consumers know what they want to eat or drink, and they know when they want it. Help them understand that their break room snack and beverage vending machines are a great on-site resource.

Below are a few suggestions that can spark employee excitement and share information about the delicious products that are available.

Taste-testing Event

It’s no surprise that humans are known for avoiding change, and that includes trying a new healthy snack or beverage. New flavors or textures can be daunting especially when it comes to spending money. Encourage your Fairfax, VA employees to enjoy new flavors and textures by offering a taste-testing event. Whether it’s once a month or once a quarter, it’s a great opportunity for your employees to experience something new, and you can learn which products are more likely to sell.

Trivia Competition

A little friendly competition is fun, and it can increase camaraderie and morale. Consider hosting a special event like a vending trivia competition with vending-related prizes. There are a lot of interesting facts about vending machines out there. Here are a couple questions to get you started.

When did the first reference to a vending machine occur? (answer: 215 BC by Hero of Alexandria, an engineer and mathematician in first-century Roman Egypt. He created a machine that accepted a coin and dispensed holy water.)

When did the U.S. Post Office start using stamp vending machines? (answer: 1905)

Vending Options in Fairfax, VA

On-site Events

Host an on-site event celebrating your employees. As part of the celebration include product discounts or snack and beverage giveaways and programs where employees can earn currency for products available in the break room. Everyone likes to get something for free or at a discounted price, even in the break room.

The Break Room

Spruce up your Fairfax, VA break room or the space where your vending machines are located. Bright, cheery, welcoming spaces are more likely to attract employees than the bleak, gray break rooms of yesterday. If possible, include several separate seating areas that encourage spontaneous conversation, collaboration or a moment of relaxation.

Lastly, consider revamping your current vending machine services or adding new ones to your break room. SunDun Office Refreshments can help you create a customized menu with the right combination of products for your Fairfax, VA employees. If you’re looking for additional refreshment services such as office coffee service, we can do that too. For more information, call SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Vending machine options in Washington DC

Washington, DC, Do You Have A Unique Vending Machine Story?

Vending machine options in Washington DC

Cabbage, lobster, clothing, gold bars, and champagne are a few of the random items that can be purchased in a vending machine somewhere in the world. In the 150+ years since the first fully automatic vending machine was invented, there have been a wide range of products, some practical and others pretty crazy, sold in different iterations of the machine known as a vending machine.

Let’s take a look at a few super-fun products that are found around the United States today.

Art

Dalton High School in Dalton, GA has come up with a new and innovative way to raise funds for it’s art department’s supplies and materials. Students in the art program design letters, pocket-sized cards, and other artwork that is sold in a vending machine. Placing it in a prominent place, next to beverage and snack vending machines, has helped increase awareness and curiosity. Eventually, the school hopes to place a second machine out in the community.

Soft-Serve Ice Cream

Soft-serve ice cream is usually associated with hot summer days and the beach, but New Yorkers can now buy it anytime of the year. Moxy Times Square, a Marriott Hotels subsidiary, has installed an on-demand soft serve vending machine with a touchscreen video display. The draw? Customers can choose from a variety of traditional and unique flavors such as the spicy Hot Honey Vanilla and top it with just as many unique toppings like the Greek yogurt chips.

Vending machine options in Washington DC

Runners’ Gear

Did you happen to run the New York City or Chicago Marathon this past year? If so, you might have seen the digital vending machines that Lululemon, an athletic apparel company, put in their New York City and Chicago stores during the marathons. Each machine offered bottled water, electrolyte-enhanced tablets, bars and energy gels, and emergency supplies such as first-aid kits, sunscreen, and face wipes all for free. That’s right; it didn’t cost a thing!

Candy Converter

This past Halloween, only the lucky few got to experience something we all wished we had as children – a way to swap out the lame candy we got while trick-or-treating for more of the “good stuff.” Anomaly, a New York City advertising agency, developed the Reese’s Halloween Candy Converter, a vending machine that accepts lame candy as currency and swaps the lame candy for peanut butter treats, or the “good stuff.” Now if we could only get one in Washington, DC.

While most of us don’t have access to those vending machines, Washington, DC has a great alternative. Healthy snack, beverage, and fresh food vending machines from SunDun Office Refreshments. Keep those employees hydrated and satiated and increase productivity and morale. And don’t forget to offer office coffee service. Whether it’s a traditional coffee service or a cafe-style experience, a delicious cup of coffee or hot tea will brighten almost anyone’s day.

For more information about customizing your Washington, DC break room, contact us at 800.466.2731. We look forward to hearing from you.

Water options in Baltimore, MD

Water, Vending Machines, and Hydration in Baltimore, MD

Water options in Baltimore, MD

Do you drink enough water on a daily basis to meet your health needs? If you’re like 77 percent of a group of recently surveyed, employed Americans, you don’t. The reason given by 43 percent of those individuals was lack of thirst. Before going any further, it is important to make a necessary statement.

If you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated.

Staying hydrated is crucial. Hydration not only plays an important role in an individual’s health, but it also impacts how that individual functions. Because dehydration has already occurred before a Baltimore, MD employee realizes that they are thirsty, the negative impact of dehydration has also likely happened.

Mild dehydration has been known to have a negative impact on productivity, energy levels, and alertness. Hydrated employees can also have an impact on workplace productivity. Tony Ibarguen, CEO of Quench recently said, “One inexpensive way to boost productivity is to encourage hydration. Companies that make it easy and convenient for their people to access and drink more water throughout the day may see their employees’ energy levels, engagement and work capacity increase.”

Unfortunately, there are several obstacles that must first be removed if Baltimore, MD employees are going to consume more: lack of time to get water; have to pay for it; and dislike the taste of it at work.

Let’s look at three ways to overcome those obstacles and help employees stay hydrated.

Lack of time to get it

Consider the placement of beverage vending machines throughout your office or facility. In addition to placing vending machines in the break room, also consider placing beverage vending machines in highly trafficked areas. By creating opportunities to get bottled water in areas where employees naturally traverse, those employees are more likely to stop and grab a bottle.

This approach is also backed by science. Researchers at the University College of London found that study participants were more likely to take the path of least resistance when it came to accomplishing a task. So in other words, it’s important to place as few obstacles as possible along the way to get a bottle of water.

Water options in Baltimore, MD

Have to pay for it

While bottleless water coolers that connect directly to the building’s water supply or a filtration system can sometimes be a solution, there are many other situations when that is not an option. A great way to provide bottled water and overcome employees needing to pay for it is to offer it at a reduced cost or for free. Baltimore, MD employees see subsidized vending or free vend as a high-value benefit, but for employers, the cost is much lower than the perceived value.

Dislike the taste of it at work

Yes, it is true. Water has a taste. Recent research published in a monthly scientific journal about neuroscience found that water has a flavor. While researchers believe water’s flavor should be in its own category, they discovered that its flavor is most closely related to the sour flavor category. Given this information, it is important to offer a variety of options from ‘normal’ bottled water to bottled flavored sparkling water. Each one of these will have a unique taste that reflects its specific mineral content or any natural flavors such as fresh fruit that might have been added.

SunDun Office Refreshments  can help Baltimore, MD employers overcome all three of these obstacles, and help employees stay hydrated by offering a variety of healthy beverages in vending machines. And don’t forget to offer healthy snacks to go with your employees’ preferred beverage choice. Hydrated and satiated employees are a win for everyone. For more information about adding healthy options to your Baltimore, MD break room, contact us at 800.466.2731. We look forward to helping your employees stay hydrated.

Break Room Snacks in Arlington, VA

Snacks in Arlington, VA Play Multiple Roles

Break Room Snacks in Arlington, VA

The definition of a snack is expanding. It no longer refers only to a small amount of sweet or salty food eaten between meals. A snack can also be a healthy meal replacement that helps Arlington, VA employees meet their daily caloric and hydration needs. All snacks, independent of their role, fall into one or more of three primary needs: nourishment, optimization, and pleasure.

Accurate and clearly written product labels play an important part before snacks and beverages are even consumed. For 39 percent of U.S. consumers, inaccurate or confusing information on a product label will trigger a switch to a product that has clearer and more accurate product information. Additionally, 68 percent of the participants in a Nielson study said they would pay more for snacks, beverages, and prepared food items that weren’t made with “bad” ingredients. Fresh, organic, clean, and Fair Trade are just a few of the terms Arlington, VA employees are looking for in the office break room.

Sweet or Salty Treat

I have some good news for you. Traditional sweet and salty snacks are not going anywhere. In 2017, the sale of chocolate-based treats produced over $1.8 billion in revenue, or 74.9 percent of the total sales for candy. On the salty side of the aisle, $2.9 billion in revenue came from the sale of chips. That’s 46.6 percent of sales in its category. Clean, organic, and “better”  ingredients play an influence here too. While sweet and salty snacks are most often consumed as a reward or indulgence, many Arlington, VA employees also use a trip to the office break room vending machine as an opportunity to enjoy new flavors and textures.

Certain snacks have always and will continue to play the role of a sweet or salty treat, but in 2018, many snacks have a new purpose.

Break Room Snacks in Arlington, VA

Healthy Meal Replacement

According to the NPD Group’s tracking of U.S. consumers’ snacking attitudes and behaviors, “snack foods eaten at main meals now represent 24 percent of all snack food eatings, which is up from 21 percent five years ago.”  Not only are Arlington, VA employees looking for nourishment and optimization (a mental or physical energy boost), they have high expectations about the quality of product labels and the ingredients that they put in their bodies. A snack with healthy ingredients that fulfills nutritional needs, keeps an employee hydrated, and improves mental focus positively impacts that individual’s health as well as increases creativity and productivity. It’s a win-win for everyone.

A vending machine in your office break room offers your Arlington, VA employees a wide range of healthy, sweet and salty snacks, and beverages that can be enjoyed at any time of the day. Not only is the office break room a place to grab a bite to eat, but it is also a relaxing environment to catch up with colleagues during the workday. To learn more about updating your vending selections or adding a new vending solution, contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.  

Breakroom Snack Options in Rockville, MD

Rockville, MD, What Is Your Favorite Breakroom Snack?

Breakroom Snack Options in Rockville, MD

Everyone has that one favorite “not-so-healthy” snack that they enjoy every now and then. While we’ve all heard that moderation is key, deciding whether to go healthy or not can be quite the dilemma. Often Rockville, MD consumers want to eat healthy, but at the same time, they want to enjoy their favorite sweet or salty guilty pleasure.

Many of Rockville, MD’s favorite sweet and salty snacks have been around for more than 30 years and include:

  • Confections (chocolate, candy, etc.): PEZ (1950), Swedish Fish (late 1950s), Nerds (1983), anything made with chocolate
  • Salty: sunflower seeds, Cheese Balls (1980s), Combos (mid 1970s), Goldfish, Doritos (1974), Pringles (1975), chips, crackers
  • Cookies and Snack Cakes: Famous Amos cookies (1975), animal crackers (1902), rice krispies treats, Oatmeal Cream Pies (1960), Oreos, Pop-tarts (1964)
  • Other snacks: Dippin’ Dots (1987), Fruit Roll-ups (1991) or fruit snacks, granola bars, Milk ‘n’ Cereal Bars or breakfast bars (1990s – early 2000s)

If Rockville, MD employees are looking, however, for something that’s a little healthier, there are a lot of healthy sweet and salty options available too. Healthier snack options include fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, popcorn, squeezable yogurt tubes, yogurt smoothies, pre-packaged organic meal kits, salsa, and hummus. Many of these healthy snacks can also be combined to create a healthy mini-meal when there isn’t enough time for a sit down meal.

Breakroom Snack Options in Rockville, MDWhether your Rockville, MD employees are craving something healthy or “not-so-healthy,” many of these snacks can be found all day in the office breakroom vending machine. Providing an easily accessible, onsite location where all types of snacks and beverages including office coffee service are available is just one benefit that lets your employees know they are valuable. Another benefit is to offer everything at a reduced or zero cost. Not only will employees welcome onsite snack and beverage options, but they will also appreciate the cash left in their pocket.  

Don’t forget to offer refreshing beverages along with both healthy and not-so-healthy snacks. It’s important to keep your employees hydrated as well as satiated. To learn more about the many different types of breakroom snack and beverage options in Rockville, MD, call SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Healthy Snacks and Beverages in Gaithersburg, MD

Gaithersburg, MD Snacks and Beverages Go Trendy in 2018

Healthy Snacks and Beverages in Gaithersburg, MD

 

2018 is predicted to bring new and unusual, but tasty, snacks and beverages to Gaithersburg, MD. According to Denise Purcell, head of content for the Specialty Food Association, “Macro trends like sustainability and health are converging in the 2018 [food] trends.” This combination will create food trends including more plant-based foods, upcycled edible products, and healthy alternative sweeteners.

Plant-Based Foods

Gone are the days when plant-based foods were only found in out of the way health food stores. Today, plant-based options are endless and can be found everywhere from the local grocery store to the office break room vending machine. Gaithersburg, MD consumers are likely to find a wide variety of plant-based options including dairy-free milk products such as cheese or yogurt; frozen desserts such as ice cream or whipped topping; and convenience foods such as crackers, cereals, cookies, bean chips, premade burritos, and protein bars. Below are a few of the plant ingredients found in healthy snacks and beverages that consumers will enjoy more of in 2018.

  • dairy-free alternatives: almonds, coconuts, cashews, soy, and rice
  • pulses: beans, lentils, chickpeas, and peas
  • vegetables: beets, sweet potatoes, kale, tomatoes, and corn    
  • ancient grains: quinoa, spelt, amaranth, kamut, and farro
  • protein-rich seeds: hemp, chia, and flax

Upcycled Edibles

Forty percent of the food produced in the United States is thrown away each year. That is equivalent to $165 billion of food. Upcycled dishes have already made appearances in home kitchens and restaurants. As Gaithersburg, MD consumers develop a better understanding of this problem, prepackaged upcycled products made from ingredients and scraps that would have otherwise been discarded, will increase in availability. Several snacks and beverages that are already available include

  • pressed juice made from imperfect fruit
  • chips made from fruit pulp
  • snack bars made from spent grain from the beer making process
  • condiments including chutney and chilis made from ugly produce
  • hot-on-the-go oatmeal made with the coffee fruit

Healthy Snacks and Beverages in Gaithersburg, MD

Alternative Sweeteners

Sugar. Many Gaithersburg, MD consumers have a love-hate relationship with it. It’s tasty, but too much of it can cause health issues. To be able to enjoy something sweet and be mindful of their health, consumers are looking for natural, alternative sweeteners that have a lower glycemic impact, fewer added sugar calories, and a sustainable footprint. The following are a few lesser known fruits that make deliciously sweet syrups and can be found in a variety of snacks and beverages.

  • dates: the fruit of the date palm tree that becomes a thick molasses-like syrup with a rich, sweet flavor
  • monk fruit: a fruit native to southern China and northern Thailand that has a flavor similar to traditional sugar
  • agave: a cactus plant from Mexico and the Southwestern United States that has a flavor similar but milder than honey
  • lucuma: a Peruvian fruit with a maple-like taste
  • yacon: a South American tuber that tastes like an apple, but has a maple-like flavor when it is a syrup  

Have your Gaithersburg, MD employees started looking for snacks and beverages that are healthier or better for the planet? Whether they want a mix of traditional and healthy choices or just an afternoon coffee pick-me-up, SunDun Office Refreshments can help. Call us at 800.466.2731 for more information about vending machines and a variety of other vending options.

Gluten Free Snacks in Arlington, VA

Arlington, VA, Meet the Gluten-Free Snack

Gluten Free Snacks in Arlington, VA

With the number of Arlington, VA individuals who have to navigate life without gluten because of an illness like Celiac Disease, it is helpful to know that gluten-free foods are now more readily available. A recent report from Research and Markets, Gluten-Free Foods in the U.S. 6th Edition, projected that sales of gluten-free foods in the following categories—Salty Snacks, Crackers, Fresh Bread, Pasta, Cold (ready-to-eat) Cereal, Baking Mixes, Cookies, Flour, and Frozen Bread/Dough—are expected to grow to more than $2 billion by 2020. That is a lot of gluten-free food and snacks.

So, what exactly is gluten? The Celiac Disease Foundation defines gluten as “a general name for the proteins found in wheat (wheatberries, durum, emmer, semolina, spelt, farina, farro, graham, KAMUT® khorasan wheat and einkorn), rye, barley, and triticale – a cross between wheat and rye.” Gluten behaves as the glue that holds food together. Several different categories of ingredients such as fruit, vegetables, and protein do not naturally have gluten. Creating snacks and other grain-based products requires additional knowledge about how each gluten-free ingredient works as the many of the frequently used grains contain gluten.

There are, however, many plant-based gluten-free ingredient options that are now being used to create healthy, tasty, and filling snacks. The following are a few that Arlington, VA employees might be familiar with:

Whole Grain, Gluten-Free Ingredients

    • Amaranth
    • Buckwheat groats (or kasha)
    • Corn (maize)
    • Gluten-free oats
    • Millet
    • Quinoa
    • Sorghum
    • Teff
  • Wild Rice/Brown Rice

Plant-Based, Gluten-Free Ingredients

    • Arrowroot
    • Pulses (beans, lentils & chickpeas)
    • Cassava
    • Chia
    • Flax
    • Nut flours
    • Soy
    • Tapioca
  • White Rice

Gluten Free Snacks in Arlington, VA

Researchers from Gluten-Free Foods in the U.S., 6th Edition found that “pulse-based [ingredients] are particularly valuable in improving the nutrient quality of gluten-free products, as they are richer in fiber, protein, and micronutrients than GF [gluten-free] staples rice and tapioca flour. The appeal of ancient and sprouted grains is much like that of pulses. For food processors [or manufacturers], these ingredients provide whole food, plant-based protein sources that enhance appearance, deliver unique tastes and textures, pack a nutritional wallop, and invite variety and innovation.”

With such a wide variety of ingredients and the different ways that they can be used, the availability of tasty gluten-free snacks in Arlington, VA has grown to include many different salty and sweet snack choices. Gluten-free salty snacks often include rice and corn puffs flavored with aged cheddar or popped potato chips with barbecue flavoring. Sweet treats vary from cookies made with rice or oat flour to gluten-free Greek yogurt with a wide variety of fruit choices.

Have you considered offering both gluten-free and traditional snacks and beverages in your office break room? SunDun Office Refreshments offers both traditional options as well as products that are gluten-free for those who need gluten-free choices. We can also help you determine the best mix of choices to offer in your office break room. For more information, contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.

Snacks in Gaithersburg, MD

Snacking in Gaithersburg, MD

Snacks in Gaithersburg, MD

How do snacks fit into your day? Do they replace a meal or help you survive until your next one? Or, maybe they’re an energy boost? What about a reward or something to satisfy a craving? You aren’t alone if your snacks function as just one of those, or if they are all three at the same time. According to Tamara Barnett, VP of strategic insights for Bellevue, Wash.-based Hartman Group, “How we go about planning, acquiring and consuming food has been disrupted, and the result has been the displacement of meals and variations in when, how and what gets consumed.”

To help the Gaithersburg, MD consumer adjust to these changes and see value in a snack or beverage, it is important to understand what the three primary snack needs are.

Snacking for Nourishment

  • helps to meet daily caloric needs and to stay hydrated
  • keeps energy levels stable and up
  • helps to manage health and diet
  • stops hunger between meals
  • examples: yogurt, granola bars, whole fruits and vegetables, water, and smoothies

Snacking for Optimization

  • helps to meet mental and physical performance goals
  • offers an energy boost
  • helps with recovery after exertion (loss of nutrients, fluids & energy levels)
  • increases mental focus
  • examples: coffee, whole fruits, popcorn, nuts, and higher protein bars or smoothies

Snacking for Pleasure

  • offers comfort and stops cravings, at least momentarily
  • can be either an indulgence or a reward
  • creates a time to eat different flavors and textures
  • is an opportunity to discover and try new foods
  • examples: cookies, candy, chips, wasabi peas, salted nuts, and flavored milk

Snacks in Gaithersburg, MD

Each of these snack needs can function independently or in combination with each other. In most situations, the Gaithersburg, MD consumer unconsciously requires that the snack be pleasurable even if the primary goal is nourishment or optimization.

Understanding the different snack needs of your employees is important as snack consumption in the workplace is up 10 percentage points to 16% compared to five years ago. 16% of the individuals looking for a snack find it at work (cafeteria or catering) and another 14% find their snacks in vending machines. One way to increase those numbers and have a positive impact on your employees is to reconsider the types of healthy snacks and beverages offered in your office break room. Barnett suggests optimizing break room layouts and product assortments to inspire snacking occasions and to meet your employees’ needs. Not only is it good for your employees’ health and well-being, but it’s also good for company morale and productivity.

To learn more about the wide variety snacks and beverages we offer and our vending options including traditional vending and free vend, contact SunDun Office Refreshments at 800.466.2731.