Nov 26, 2011

Vending Machines

Did you know the first vending machines were invented in the first century in the city of Alexandria. The only goody sold was holy water. When a coin was dropped into a slot, its weight would pull a cork out of a spigot and the machine would dispense a trickle of holy water.

During the early 1880s, the first commercial coin-operated vending machines were introduced in London, England and dispensed post cards. An English publisher and bookshop owner invented a vending machine for selling books.

In 1888, the Thomas Adams Gum Company introduced the first vending machines to the United States and installed them on the elevated subway platforms in New York City. Naturally they sold Tutti-Fruiti gum. Round candy coated gumballs and gumball vending machines were introduced in 1907.

Polyvend introduced the first glass front snack machines in 1972 and the first frozen food vending machines are introduced in 1987. Coffee machines didn't appear until 1991.

Today vending machines sell everything from live bait to hot and cold full meals, including one that actually mixes ingredients and bakes a pizza while you wait. Australians love the machines that make fresh french fries while you watch. Mmmm!

Japan has the highest number of vending machines per capita, with about one machine for every twenty-three people.