Study Finds Coffee May Protect the Brain From Cognitive Decline

Office CoffeeIt’s no secret that a fresh cup of coffee can give us a boost of energy and alertness in the morning, but new research suggests that drinking coffee could have long-term benefits on our cognitive health as well. Thanks to the presence of chemical compounds called phenylindanes that develop during the brewing process, coffee may contribute to a reduced risk of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

 

That’s what researchers at the Krembil Brain Institute in Toronto found after analyzing the chemical compositions of light roast, dark roast and decaffeinated dark roast coffees.

“Coffee consumption does seem to have some correlation to a decreased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease,” said Dr. Donald Weaver, co-director of the Krembil Brain Institute in a statement. “but we wanted to investigate why that is—which compounds are involved and how they may impact age-related cognitive decline.”

Weaver and his research team studied the effect of coffee on the brain by exposing three different coffee extracts to the amyloid beta and tau proteins which form “clumps” during the development of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. They found that all three extracts inhibited protein clumping, which suggests that coffee could help to stave off the progression of these neurodegenerative diseases.

They also noted that while both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee extracts inhibited protein clumping, the effect was more pronounced with dark roast coffee. This is likely due to the fact that phenylindane concentrations tend to increase in coffees with longer roasting times.

“By heating things up, the chemicals undergo changes,” said Dr. Weaver in a recent interview. “As well, the heating process gives us access to chemicals that would normally not be there.”

Ultimately, Dr. Weaver hopes that his research might help scientists develop a phenylindane-based treatment that prevents protein clumping, thereby slowing or even stopping cognitive decline in people with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

As if we needed one more reason to start our day with a hot cup of coffee.

The London Underground is Getting Laundry Vending Machines

Dry CleaningDry cleaning your professional attire is a great way to prolong the lifespan of some of your nicest clothing, but taking weekly trips to the cleaners can be a huge hassle. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a simpler way to dry clean your clothes without being forced to add one more thing to your to-do list?

In London, many commuters can now drop off their dry cleaning on their way to work thanks to a local company called VClean Life.

This startup recently introduced vending machines called VDrop machines that are designed to make dry cleaning easy for busy professionals who can’t always make it to the cleaners. Now, commuters can deposit their clothing in one of the machines—which are conveniently located in London Underground stations throughout the city—and have them dry cleaned, folded and ready to be picked up in just 24 hours.

To start using VClean Life’s unique new service, all people have to do is sign up for it online and receive a QR code from the company. Using this code, customers can drop clothes off at any VDrop machine in the city. Then, the clothing will be picked up, transported to a facility owned by VClean Life, dry cleaned and returned to the same machine in under a day. Despite the added convenience, the service expected to cost a fraction of the price of working with a traditional dry-cleaning company.

At Orsino Vending, we’re always excited to see what companies like VClean Life are doing with vending machines these days. We’re also working hard to provide companies with everything they need to incorporate vending machines into their own businesses. Call us at (201) 871-9286 to get started today!

A NYC Butcher Shop Is Selling Meat in Vending Machines

Ribeye SteakNeed a cut of steak at a moment’s notice? If you happen to be in New York City, you can have 24-hour access to fresh beef, pork, lamb and more thanks to a series of new vending machines at the Applestone Meat Co. butcher shop. The shop’s owner Josh Applestone was reportedly inspired by the automat designs of the 1950s.

“I remembered Horn & Hardart [the ‘50s automated luncheonette, whose last new York outpost closed in 1991],” said Applestone in an interview with Bloomberg. “There were very few people providing nonstop food. I put two and two together.”

Applestone’s meat vending machines look similar to the carousel-style fresh food vending machines you might see in schools and office buildings. Applestone currently has vending machines in two locations on the outskirts of NYC, and he plans to expand his operation to at least three more locations by 2019. He’s also in the process of developing custom-made machines that are expected to be ready by next year. Whereas his current vending machines can hold about 150 items each, his new machines will be able to hold as many as 1,000 items at once.

Ultimately, Applestone would like to bring his vending machines to neighborhoods in other cities across the country as well. He hopes that the 24/7 machines will offer a convenient source of fresh food to people whose hectic lifestyles may keep them from making it to the grocery store after a long day of work. Thus far, his vending machine enterprise has been enormously successful. According to his interview in Bloomberg, Applestone’s vending machines in Stone Ridge, New York currently account for about 70 percent of his total sales.

Want to outfit your workplace with a modern fresh food vending machine? You can find a number of great options at Orsino Vending! Give us a call or contact us online today to get started.

Natural Biopolymers Could Replace Plastic Packaging in Vending Machines

Plastic Wrapped PeppersIf you’ve purchased fresh food from a vending machine recently, you may have noticed that it came wrapped in transparent plastic packaging. This impermeable packaging is very effective at preventing fresh food from spoiling, but it’s not especially environmentally friendly. That’s why researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are exploring innovative ways to develop new food packaging materials made from natural fibers.

Earlier this month, the researchers announced that they have created a promising new material derived from crab shells and tree fibers that could one day serve as a viable replacement for flexible plastic food packaging. The material is made by spraying alternating layers of chitin from crab shells and cellulose fibers from trees to form a flexible, compostable and impermeable film. These two materials, chitin and cellulose, are the world’s most common natural biopolymers.

“The main benchmark that we compare it to is PET, or polyethylene terephthalate, one of the most common petroleum-based materials in the transparent packaging you see in vending machines and soft drink bottles,” says professor J. Carson Meredith of Georgia Tech’s School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. “Our material showed up to a 67 percent reduction in oxygen permeability over some forms of PET, which means it could in theory keep foods fresher longer.”

The research team’s biopolymer-based packaging sounds like a promising proof of concept, but they still have plenty of work to do to develop a cost-effective manufacturing process that can produce the material in large quantities. If they succeed in their efforts to mass produce the eco-friendly packaging, it could significantly reduce the amount of plastic we consume in vending machines and grocery stores each year.

Coca-Cola Promotes Recycling With Reverse Vending Machines

Reverse Vending MachineCold bottles of Coca-Cola have been vending machine staples for decades, and now the company is using “reverse vending machines” to encourage their customers to recycle every bottle of Coke they buy. Earlier this month, Coca-Cola deployed its reverse vending machines at the 50th anniversary Special Olympics USA Games in Seattle. Each time an attendee returned a bottle or can to one of the machines, it would automatically contribute the $.05 deposit as a donation to Special Olympics Washington. In other places where Coca-Cola has installed its reverse vending machines, customers can receive gifts such as Coke-branded t-shirts, bags and hats made from recycled plastic when they deposit their used bottles and cans.

Coca-Cola is particularly interested in using its reverse vending machines to encourage recycling at music festivals and other outdoor events where large quantities of bottled beverages are consumed. They’ve even suggested offering VIP benefits to fans who use their recycling centers at these events. Coca-Cola North America is currently in the process of deploying reverse vending machines at retail locations in the United States and Canada as well.

This program constitutes just one part of Coca-Cola’s ambitious World Without Waste initiative, which aims to “collect and recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can it sells globally by 2030.” In addition to creating its own recycling centers, the company is also working to develop 100-percent recyclable packaging and reduce the amount of plastic that is used to make its bottles.

Keep an eye out next time you buy a bottle of Coke from a vending machine—there could be another machine waiting to take your bottle back nearby!

Encourage Healthy Workplace Eating Habits With These Tips

Healthy SnackThere are many benefits associated with encouraging your employees to lead healthy lifestyles. Healthy employees tend to be more productive and take fewer sick days, for example. Check out a few of our favorite tips for promoting healthy workplace eating habits below!

Order healthy food options for office parties.

When you order food for an office party, it might be tempting to call up the local pizza place and ask them to deliver a few pies. But is that really the right choice for your employees? Rather than ordering greasy takeout options, offer your employees more nutritious foods at parties instead. A “Make Your Own Salad” table can be a lot of fun, and it will give your employees an opportunity to try healthier foods.

Hold contests that promote healthy eating.

Losing weight on your own can be a challenge, but losing weight as a team? That can be all the motivation your employees need to drop some pounds. Consider offering rewards like a day of paid time off if they’re able to lose ‘X’ number of pounds as a group. Not only can this foster healthy diet and exercise habits, it can help build camaraderie among your employees as well.

Stock vending machines with nutritious foods.

What’s inside the vending machines in your office? If you’re only offering things like cookies and chips, it may be hard for your employees to find healthy snacks throughout the day. These days, you can find a variety of healthy vending machine options that are great alternatives to traditional sodas and salty snacks.

To learn more about all the healthy food options we offer at Orsino Vending, give us a call or contact us online today!

Carvana Unveils New Eight-Story Vehicle Vending Machine

Woman in New CarYou can find just about anything in vending machines these days. Whether you’re looking to grab a quick bite to eat in your office or a new pair of headphones at the airport, you can usually find a vending machine that has just what you need.

Now, people in Charlotte, North Carolina can even buy cars from a vending machine owned and operated by Carvana.

This massive machine is eight stories tall, and it’s capable of holding up to 32 cars at a time. Carvana, which specializes in buying and selling vehicles online, designed the machine to give their customers a convenient new way to purchase cars without having to spend hours in a dealership. All they need to do is find the vehicle they want online, select a payment option, and then choose for it to be delivered to the vending machine for pickup.

Once the car arrives, its new owner can schedule a time to visit the vending machine and activate it with a large commemorative coin. The machine will then spring into action, sending the vehicle down to a delivery bay where it can be picked up by the customer and driven home. All of this is done without the help of any human employees.

Carvana hopes that the vending machine will encourage more people to buy cars online, rather than from traditional brick-and-mortar dealerships. Last year, the company began offering a similar vending machine service in Houston, Texas as well.

Interested in outfitting your workplace with a modern, versatile vending machine? Give us a call today or contact us online to get started!

Vending Machines are Replacing Farm Stalls in the Netherlands

Farm Stand

By now you’ve probably noticed that vending machines have undergone something of a renaissance in recent years. Not only are they safe and secure, they’re also an affordable option for many vendors. And the best part? These days, you can find just about anything in them. Take this recent story from the Netherlands, for example.

As farm stalls and markets continue to grow in popularity, one company is testing a new way to bring that fresh farm produce to the masses: a vending machine!

The Lockblox is an innovative system that’s being embraced by Dutch farmers across the country, offering a convenient opportunity for growers to sell their fruits and vegetables without raising their price tags or worrying about theft.

According to an article in FreshPlaza, one farmer loads up his vending machine with strawberries and asparagus before he leaves the farm on Sundays. This way, he knows that they won’t run out by the time he returns. In the meantime, he can even check his inventory on VendingWeb, the app associated with the farm stall vending machines.

The Lockblox’s creator, Sander Sciarone, said he wanted to change peoples’ perceptions of what can be offered in a vending machine—instead of just soft drinks and snacks, why not fresh produce?

At Orsino Vending, we love hearing stories about how the vending machine industry is innovating to meet new market demands and consumer behaviors. Interesting in adding a fresh food vending machine to your office or storefront? Give us a call or contact us online today to learn more!

Benefits of Renting, Rather Than Buying, a Vending Machine

Vending Machine PurchaseVending machines are common features of modern office life that offer employees a convenient way to stay alert and refreshed with a variety of snacks and beverages. These machines aren’t cheap though, and they can sometimes be prohibitively expensive for budding entrepreneurs and small business owners. That’s why many business owners choose to rent their vending machines instead! Today we’ll look at just a few of the many benefits of renting a vending machine for your workplace.

Lower Up-Front Cost

Vending machines typically start at around $3,000, and high-end models can cost as much as $10,000. Needless to say, these price tags can make a vending machine a daunting investment for small businesses. Renting effectively eliminates this up-front expense by spreading the cost out over a period of months or years. You can even recoup some the cost of your rental fees with the profits you generate from the vending machine.

No Need to Stock It Yourself

The sticker price isn’t the only thing you’ll have to pay when you buy a vending machine. You’ll also have to pay to keep it stocked with food and drinks. When you rent, on the other hand, the cost of stocking the vending machine is typically included in the lease agreement. Each week, a representative from your vending machine company can come out to make sure your machine is well-stocked with everything your workforce needs to stay happy, healthy and productive.

Maintenance Is Included

Your vending machine company can do more than just re-stock your machine; they can make sure it’s properly cleaned and maintained as well. This way, if you ever have any trouble with your machine, you’ll always have a trusted partner you can call on to get it up-and-running again.

At Orsino Vending, we offer a number of affordable leasing options that are ideal for business of all shapes and sizes. To learn more about any of the vending machines we carry, feel free to give us a call or contact us online today!

 

 

Benefits of Promoting Healthy Workplace Habits

Healthy Snack at WorkMaintaining a healthy lifestyle doesn’t just make us feel better. It can make us happier and more productive at work as well. By exercising and eating well, we can unlock the potential of our brains and bodies to do our very best work. Today we’ll look at just a few of the many benefits of fostering healthy habits in the workplace.

Improved Morale

When people stay active and maintain nutrient-rich diets, they tend to have a more positive and optimistic outlook on life. This, in turn, can make your workplace a better place for everyone. Your employees will come to work feeling energized, alert and ready to get the job done right. It’s amazing what a difference high morale can make in a workplace setting.

Increased Ambition

Another common side-effect of a healthy lifestyle is self-confidence. This can give your employees the courage to grow and come up with creative solutions to difficult problems. When your workforce is healthy, you may notice an increase in their tendency to be motivated and ambitious.

Greater Satisfaction

Let’s face it: health and happiness go hand-in-hand. When people aren’t in good health, they may simply not have the energy to enjoy themselves at work. Although there will always be stressful times in the workplace, it’s much easier to feel a sense of satisfaction and contentedness when we’re healthy.

At Orsino Vending, we offer a diverse selection of vending machines stocked with fresh, nutritious foods. These machines can make it much easier for employees to maintain healthy habits at work. Give us a call or contact us online today to learn more!

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