herbal tea options in atlanta offices

Tea Delights Atlanta Employees Year Round

herbal tea options in atlanta offices

“Just like eating fruits, vegetables and other plant-based foods, regular tea consumption has been shown to have significant health benefits.”

– Peter Goggi, President of the Tea Council of the USA.”

The weather may be warm outside, but that doesn’t mean Atlanta employees can’t enjoy a delicious cup of hot or cold tea during their workday or on the weekend. With so many different types available, it can feel overwhelming when trying to choose one. Let’s take a step back and start at the beginning.

Tea starts as a single plant, the Camellia sinensis. How the leaves are cared for, plucked and dried or oxidized will determine the end result. The five main types are black, white, green, oolong and puerh (or dark). 

Black tea is the most commonly consumed type in the world. In the United States, over 80 percent of the tea consumed is black. The key is to make sure that the leaves are fully fermented or oxidized.

Green tea is known to have many health benefits including stress reduction and improved memory, attention and brain function. To make green tea, the leaves are heated after being plucked to prevent oxidation.

Oolong tea is made by only partially fermenting the leaves. Once the plucked leaves have withered, they are then fermented before beginning the drying process.

White tea is one of the most unique types. It can only be produced by following strict harvesting and processing guidelines developed in the Fujian Province in China. A simple description of the process includes the following steps. The leaves are hand-picked, delicately handled, steamed and then dried. 

herbal tea options in atlanta offices

Puerh or “dark” tea is also unique because it is aged for decades before it is consumed. By storing it for so many years after processing, the microbes on the leaves are able to ferment to create a distinct beverage.

To brew an excellent hot beverage, the Tea Council of the USA recommends following the Four Golden Rules:

  • “use a teapot 
  • bring fresh, cold tap water to a full boil (Note: If your water is heavily chlorinated or contains other objectionable odors, filter before boiling) 
  • use one teaspoon or one tea bag per cup 
  • pour boiling water over bag and brew by the clock 3 to 5 minutes and serve”

The following times are recommended steep times for creating the perfect cup: white for 1-3 minutes, green for 3 minutes and black, oolong and dark for 3-5 minutes.  To make smaller quantities of iced tea, pour the hot beverage over ice, and enjoy. (Be careful when pouring hot water into a glass glass. Hot water can cause the glass to crack.)

Whether Atlanta employees choose black, green or herbal tea will depend on their taste preferences and the health benefits they are looking for. The best approach to meet a variety of needs is to offer a wide selection of different hot beverages as part of your break room’s office coffee service. And don’t forget to offer cream, including a dairy-free option, and sugar for those who don’t drink their tea or coffee black. 

For more information about customizing your coffee service or other break room refreshment services, PB&J Vending can help. We offer comprehensive vending services including snack, cold beverage and fresh food vending machines, micro-markets and pantry service. To schedule a product sampling, call us today at 877-820-8363.

vending options in atlanta

NAMA Presents Growth Opportunities to the Vending Industry

vending options in atlanta

Growth is a common theme found throughout the vending industry in 2019. This past April, 4,500 convenience services professionals converged at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV for The NAMA Show 2019. The show is an annual event sponsored by the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA), a group representing the $25 billion convenience service industry in the United States. 

With over 360 exhibitors including some of the world’s most popular brands, 100 new exhibitors and 125 new products for visitors to learn about, there was something for everyone to explore. Advancements in vending machines, coffee service, micro-markets, and pantry services were on display. Vending service providers, customers and industry providers gathered to see and learn about up and coming consumer and industry trends including new business and career growth strategies, educational opportunities, new products and brands, healthy choices, going green and new technologies. 

Two key areas with a large amount of growth at the show were healthy products and new technology trends and solutions

Healthy is still in.

Even after the organizers increased the size of the footprint for the healthy or better-for-you pavilion to 3,300 square-feet, the pavilion was sold out. It’s clear that healthy snacks and beverages continue to represent an area with growth potential.  

Manufacturers are listening to consumers and developing new products to meet consumer demand. Vending providers are also listening to their customers. In addition to healthy products with attributes from responsibly sourced to lower calories to reduced sugar and non-GMO, new approaches to eating healthier were also on display. Those trends included on-the-go nutrition, functional choices that support a specific lifestyle, occasion-based eating, and providing fresh fruit at the office.

Technology keeps evolving.

And the vending and refreshment industry is no different. Innovations in technology are improving both the front-end (consumer) and back-end (vending provider) experiences. For example, social media communities, personalized web-portals, and live chat enable back-and-forth communication between consumer and vending provider. To appeal to consumers, vending providers offer self-checkout technology that processes quick, cashless payments and fast, seamless product delivery systems. 

Vending providers, on the other hand, look for back-office management tools that will improve warehouse organization and order fulfillment. Innovative systems on display at the 2019 NAMA Show included technology that optimized up-to-the-minute sales data, maximized delivery routes; increased efficiencies, and minimized out-of-stock occurrences.

Whether an organization would like to update their current break room vending machine menu or create a customized micro-market or pantry service, PB&J Vending can help. We provide our Atlanta customers with the newest technologies and healthy snack, beverage, and fresh food choices to create a space that could only be called “the ultimate break room.” For more information about our refreshment services or to schedule a taste test, please call us at 877-820-8363. We look forward to hearing from you.

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

Atlanta, Did You See the Bacon Vending Machine?

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

Students at Ohio State University proved once again that anything can be sold in a vending machine. In December of 2018, the meat science program at Ohio State and the Ohio Pork Council partnered to sell students packets of ready-to-eat bacon for $1 from a vending machine during finals week.

Unexpectedly successful, the students of the meat science program had to restock the machine four to five times per day just to keep up with demand. The fundraiser sold over 275 pounds of bacon in the eight-day period. 

So, how does a stand-alone machine that sells bacon end up on a college campus? Ohio State senior and part-time employee at the Ohio Pork Council, Meghann Winters, suggested it as a way to promote Ohio pork. Since the concept of offering cooked bacon via a vending machine was unheard of, Winters had to purchase an old vending machine and “baconify” it. 

Retrofitting the machine proved to be a challenging process. Per Winters, “Most vending machines are made for candy bars, not necessarily bacon. We had to make sure the packaging didn’t get caught as it was falling out. We also had to find shelf-friendly bacon.”

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

While a bacon vending machine is definitely unique, and the bacon delicious, that doesn’t mean “traditional” vending machines are boring. In fact, there are a variety of healthy and traditional snacks and beverages as well as fresh food in Atlanta break room vending machines that will satisfy any palate. 

A frequent challenge is drawing attention to the snacks, beverages and fresh food, and encouraging employees to try something new. One way to overcome that hurdle is to host a taste-testing event. Atlanta employees are more likely to try something they’ve never consumed if that item is free. A side benefit of satiated and happier employees is often increased morale and increased productivity. That sounds like a win for everyone.

Whether your break room needs a complete overhaul or just a few updates, PB&J Vending can help. We offer a variety of refreshment services including sought-after, brand name snacks and beverages as well as fresh food in state-of-the-art vending machines. For more information, please contact PB&J Vending at (877) 820.8363.

healthy options in atlanta

Healthy Options Play a Vital Role in Atlanta Micro-Markets

healthy options in atlanta

The demand for fresh, natural and organic products is on the rise. With the continued interest in healthy eating, Atlanta vending providers and employers have an opportunity to educate consumers about the newest choices in the better-for-you category. Lucille Beseler, president of Family Nutrition Center of S. Florida shared “that people are interested in nutrition and listening to the newest product options, which includes what is available in the micro market.”

Beseler’s statement is supported by an increased demand for healthy snacks. Automatic Merchandiser’s annual industry report shows the increase in demand as it found that fresh food and better-for-you product sales compromised a larger percentage of overall micro-market sales than before.

Savory snacks are no longer the only type of snack that might be changed to be considered better-for-you. Sweets, especially dark chocolate, are being made with healthier ingredients. A recent report by Convenience Store Designs covered the changes in chocolate sales and determined that better-for-you qualities like the benefits of dark chocolate or the addition of functional ingredients played an important role in increasing sales. 

But better-for-you chocolate isn’t the only sweet treat that Atlanta consumers are looking for in their break room. The sought-after bold and hot flavors currently found in snacks have made their way to the candy aisle. In fact, sales of non-chocolate spicy and hot candy products are increasing at rate of 25% compared to non-chocolate candy.

healthy options in atlanta

While the health benefits of snacks, fresh food and beverages are very important to Atlanta consumers, they also want to learn about how eating or drinking a specific product will feel and sound. For instance, is it crunchy, crispy or silky? Are there multiple textures within a single product? Products that share information about textures have a higher chance of being purchased. Combine bold and spicy flavors with touch and sound, and you’ll have an experience consumers are looking for.

Drawing your Atlanta employees into the micro-market with a combination of healthy, bold and spicy, and textually-intriguing snacks can also result in multiple benefits for both you and your employees. A welcoming space where colleagues can spontaneously gather creates opportunities for creativity. Healthy employees who are also satiated and hydrated are likely to be more productive. And as snacks continue to replace meals during the day, they will continue to be a strong revenue driver.

Whether it’s time to update your current micro-market menu or create a new one from scratch, PB&J Vending would like to help. We will help customize the perfect combination of refreshment options from healthy snacks, beverages and fresh food to office coffee service. For more information, please contact PB&J Vending at 877-820-8363. 

sparkling water options in atlanta

Atlanta, Meet Bubly, a New Sparkling Water Option

sparkling water options in atlanta

“Buh-blee” or bubly, PepsiCo’s latest addition to the sparkling water beverage market, is poised to make a big splash. Atlanta consumers continue to seek out specialized and personalized hydration options both at home and now more frequently, on-the-go. Bubly is an option that checks all of the necessary boxes. 

Euromonitor, a market research firm, has predicted that the sparkling-water market will hit $2.6 billion this year, offering further evidence that sparkling water is an important beverage choice everywhere. This is especially important to understand in foodservice establishments like your Atlanta break room because consumers visit foodservice locations more than 200 times per year. That’s a lot more foot traffic than even grocery stores see.

With the increase in demand for refreshing and healthy beverages, bubly is an upbeat and playful option that offers 12 unique flavors with no artificial flavors, no sweeteners and no calories and can be sold in any type of vending services’ environment from vending machines to fountain units.  

In addition to traditional bottled water, enjoying sparkling water offers Atlanta employees multiple benefits.

sparkling water options in atlanta

Hydration: just like regular drinking water, sparkling water (with no added sweeteners) is hydrating. At its most basic level, being dehydrated negatively affects how the cells in the body function and is something that should be avoided.   

Swallowing: a 2015 study found that sparkling or carbonated water may help with one’s swallowing ability. “Carbonated water showed the strongest ability to stimulate the nerves responsible for swallowing.” 

Hunger: according to the National Institutes of Health, sparkling or carbonated water may increase feelings of fullness by causing food in the stomach to stay there longer. This is great news for those individuals who are concerned about eating too much.  

Productivity: proper hydration levels are not only necessary for one’s body to function properly, but they play an important role in cognitive performance. Dehydrated employees are more likely to have slower reaction times, poorer short-term memory and trouble paying attention which negatively impacts overall productivity. 

What type of sparkling water can your Atlanta employees find in their break room? It doesn’t matter which type of vending services you offer, vending machines, a micro-market or pantry service, this type of beverage and others can be added to any menu. 

For more information about updating your current beverage menu or creating a new one from scratch, contact PB&J Vending at 877-820-8363. We would be happy to help.  

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

A Day to Commemorate the Atlanta Vending Machine

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

March 7 is now an important day for Atlanta residents who have purchased an item from or worked with a vending machine or the products it delivers. National Vending Day, a day of celebration developed by NAMA, is “a point-in-time to recognize vending and the value it provides to millions of consumers, 24/7/365.”

You might be wondering what type of value the vending industry provides. Vending is found in every community in the U.S., is an essential component of the Convenience Services industry and is a big contributor to the Convenience Services nearly $25 billion economic impact. According to NAMA, the Convenience Services industry provides “140,000 good paying jobs with $7.21 billion in wages, [and] pays $3.5 billion taxes at every level of government.” Add in the wide variety of snacks, beverages and fresh food, and it’s easy to see the value.

As we celebrate the vending industry today and look toward the future, let’s pause and look back at a bit of vending machine history.

The concept of a vending machine has been around for a lot longer than most Atlanta residents realize. In fact, the first vending machine was said to have been referenced by the mathematician Hero in 215 BC in Ancient Egypt. In his machine, the user placed a coin in the machine and received holy water. Other important dates include:

1886: U.S. granted several patents for coin-operated dispensers.

1888: Tutti-Frutti gum vending machines were installed in a Atlanta subway station.

1946: The first coffee vending machines were invented.

1950: Refrigerated sandwich vending machines expanded the lunch menu.

1960: Dollar bill changers were added to vending banks, and single-cup coffee vending machines were introduced.

1961: Canned soft drink vending machines offered customers a new beverage option.

1972: Glass-front snack machines were introduced.

1985: Credit card / debit card devices for vending machines were introduced.

1987: First hand-held computers that electronically captured vending data were used, and frozen food vending machines were introduced.

1991: Flavored coffees, espresso and cappuccino were introduced in coffee machines.

1993: First remote wireless transmission of data from machines to warehouses occurred.

Vending Machine Options in Atlanta

How will the next 100+ years change the vending industry? What will the break rooms of the late 21st century look like? While we can’t predict what a future Atlanta break room will look like, we can make sure that the break room of 2019 meets the needs of today’s employees. In additional to traditional and healthy vending, micro-markets and office coffee service are just a couple of the refreshment options that will help create the ultimate break room today.

For more information about updating your current break room or performing a complete makeover, please contact PB&J Vending at 877-820-8363. Let’s celebrate together!

Healthy snacks in atlanta

Healthy Snacks are a Necessity in Atlanta Break Rooms

Healthy snacks in atlanta

Consumer demand for convenient and healthy snacks such as cereal bars, energy bars and other snack bars is growing. According to market research firm Mordor Intelligence, the snack bar market value is expected to increase by 22 percent between 2017 and 2023. That translates to a lot of snack bars.

The researchers believe that the changing lifestyle of Atlanta employees will continue to play an important role in the expected increase. Consuming three large meals per day is gradually being replaced with smaller meals or larger, healthy snacks that are enjoyed more frequently throughout the day. Manufacturers have responded to this shift by developing a snack bar for every occasion from protein-filled energy bars to fruit bars that will satisfy a sweet tooth. 

But it’s not just any type of snack bar or meal-like snack that will do. Atlanta employees are looking for healthy products with “clean” ingredients, reduced sugar, higher amounts of protein and functional ingredients. Reduced amounts of sugar usually mean fewer calories, protein stabilizes blood sugar levels and slows digestion, and functional ingredients serve more than one purpose. 

Other convenient and healthy snacks that have higher levels of protein and lower amounts of sugar and can be found in the break room include beef jerky, trail mix, Greek yogurt, cheese, nuts, roasted chickpeas, and hummus and veggies.

healthy snacks in atlanta

Even though the previously listed snacks are usually higher in protein, lower in sugar and often categorized as healthy, it is important to remember to pay attention to the serving size and the information on the nutrition label. Many of these types of snacks can be high in added sugar or calories. To help Atlanta employees make sure that they don’t get too much, they should always ask, “Is the package that the snack bar or yogurt or nuts came in considered a portion or a serving size?” 

You might be thinking that they are the same thing, but no, they aren’t. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, “A portion is how much food you choose to eat at one time, whether in a restaurant, from a package, or at home. A serving, or serving size, is the amount of food listed on a product’s Nutrition Facts, or food label…Depending on how much you choose to eat, your portion size may or may not match the serving size.” 

Another way to help your Atlanta employees eat healthier is to offer healthy snacks and beverages in the break room vending machine or micro-market. The easier it is to find and purchase great-tasting, healthy options including snack bars, the more likely an individual is to go that route. There’s an extra bonus too. Satiated, hydrated and healthy employees who stay on-site to grab a bite to eat or drink are more productive and creative. Spontaneous conversations among coworkers always seem to happen when they are least expected.

For more information about any of our vending service options including office coffee service or to customize a menu for your specific location, contact PB&J Vending at 877-820-8363. 

beverage options in Atlanta

Three Beverage Trends to Explore in Atlanta During 2019

beverage options in Atlanta

Everyone has that one beverage that they can’t live without. It might be a perfectly brewed cup of coffee, a specific brand of bottled water, or a favorite carbonated beverage from childhood. While those beverages often spark feelings of contentment, comfort or happiness, there are new cold beverages out there waiting to be discovered.

In 2019, Atlanta employees will find new approaches to three very popular beverages, soft drinks, coffee and iced tea.

Artisan or Craft Soft Drinks

The interest in artisan or craft soft drinks has increased as Atlanta consumers look to explore new products and flavors and seek to match their personal beliefs with the products they purchase. Craft soft drinks are thought to be healthier as they are made from natural and organic ingredients and are made by smaller, more artisanal companies who put a lot of care into their products. For consumers and these producers, craft soft drinks are not simply consumable products; they have a story to tell. Whether it’s helping their local community or the environment, each organization and/or beverage has a specific focus and purpose.

Cold-brew Coffee

Cold-brew coffee has been available for a couple years in a small number of locations, but that has changed. Today, this coffee beverage can be found in a variety of Atlanta locations in several different forms including ready-to-drink, single-serve containers, bulk containers, and on tap. Crafted at room temperature over a long period of time, cold brew is up to 70 percent less acidic than traditionally brewed hot coffee. The more balanced, lower acidic levels of cold brew are the result of a slower, cooler brewing process and are responsible for a smoother, creamier, full-bodied and less bitter taste profile.

beverage options in Atlanta

Specialty Iced Tea  

While iced tea, as we know it today, has been around since the early 1900s, new and specialty flavors are making their way to the front of the line. For many Atlanta consumers, the traditional flavors from unsweetened black or green tea are not enough. Consumers want the benefits of unsweetened tea, but they also want a sweeter flavor without the extra sugar. The hibiscus plant is a popular solution to the problem with its sweet flavor and bright, appealing color, and there has been a 62 percent increase in its use in iced tea since 2014. Offering specialty iced teas in ready-to-drink containers such as cans and bottles has also helped increase the visibility and availability of these tasty beverages.

Can Atlanta employees purchase any of these beverage choices in their breakroom? Instead of going offsite to purchase a craft soft drink, a cold-brew coffee, or a specialty iced tea, meet your employees where they are — at work. 

Whether it’s customizing a new vending machine or micro-market beverage menu, PB&J Vending can help. We offer a wide variety of hot and cold beverages as well as snacks and fresh food. For more information or to schedule a tasting, please contact us at 877-820-8363.

Micro Markets options in Atlanta

Draw Atlanta Employees to the Break Room with a Micro-Market

Micro Markets options in Atlanta

Why should employers consider adding a micro-market to the break room? Because micro-markets have become an integral part of the Atlanta break room experience. Not only are there more micro-markets today than there were a few years ago, but micro-markets are projected to continue to see impressive growth.

Many of the benefits enjoyed by Atlanta employees and employers after using a micro-market are intangible. For example, a creative break room design with a micro-market is a must-have retention tool for current employees, and a high-value benefit that potential employees seek. Other benefits that are often seen include:

  • a boost in employee morale and productivity
  • an increase in efficiency because employees stay onsite, and the micro-market is open 24 hours per day
  • meeting the needs of those employees who do not work traditional hours
  • a bigger space that allows for additional healthy selections

Micro Market options in Atlanta

Employees have a lot of options when it comes to choosing where to purchase something to eat or drink during the workday. A micro-market offers a wide selection of fresh food, snacks, and beverages, but as with any retail endeavor, the customers’ preferences, or in this case, your employees’ preferences, need to be considered. Take the time to research and customize a micro-market menu that will keep your Atlanta employees coming back.

For example, pizza is a popular meal to include on the menu. A recent survey found that 86 percent of participants would be willing to give something up for a year to have free pizza whenever they want. Americans love pizza. For those employees who are in the mood for something different, a variety of sandwiches, burritos, soups and salads make excellent options. With the extra space available in a micro-market, employees can also enjoy a wide selection of traditional and healthy snacks and beverages, and office coffee service.

Keep your Atlanta employees returning to the break room with a micro-market designed by PB&J Vending. To learn more about micro-markets or to set up a consultation, please contact us at 877-820-8363.

healthy snack options in atlanta

Atlanta Loves Salty Snacks

healthy snack options in atlanta

Salty snacks are here to stay. Atlanta individuals will continue to find them at a variety of retail establishments, at home and at work. In fact, a recent report developed by Freedonia Focus Reports found that the demand for corn chips is expected to outgrow the demand for potato chips. But it’s not just the demand for traditional salty snacks that is on the rise. Individuals want to enjoy new salty product offerings that are healthier.

Saltiness like sweetness is one of those tastes that can cause Atlanta employees to eat too much of it. The human body needs salt, but it is important to be careful how much salt one eats. Understanding how much salt is the right amount of salt for one’s body is challenging. It’s sort of like “Too little, too much, and just right.”

Let’s take a look at why the “just right” spot is so important.

Salt consists of sodium and chloride, and sodium and chloride play a crucial role in maintaining human health. Since the human body cannot produce sodium and chloride, an outside source is needed. That source is salt. A familiar example of using and replacing sodium and chloride in the human body is when Atlanta individuals excrete sodium and chloride by sweating. They then replenish the lost sodium and chloride by consuming salt.

The components of salt are very important.

  • Sodium is essential for nerve and muscle function, is involved in the regulation of fluids in the body and helps to control blood pressure and volume.
  • Chloride, an electrolyte, regulates fluids, transmits nerve impulses, maintains the acid-base (pH) balance in the body, and is a crucial component in the production of stomach acid (HCl).

healthy snack options in atlanta

But too much salt is unhealthy.

  • People who consume too much sodium may develop hypertension or high blood pressure, a condition that can lead to serious illnesses such as heart disease, kidney disease and stroke.
  • When too much chloride is in the body, the high levels of acid in the blood can cause a condition called hyperchloremia to occur.

Atlanta employees should take the time to figure out what their “just right” amount of salt is. Then, when the mood strikes for something salty, try one these better-for-you, salty snacks.

  • multigrain or whole-grain tortilla chips
  • whole grain pretzels, plain or in a variety of flavors
  • edamame with sea salt
  • baked sweet potato or regular potato chips
  • veggie chips
  • baked lentil or brown rice chips
  • popcorn
  • black olives

As a Atlanta employer, remember to include a variety of healthy, salty snacks for your employees in the break room vending machines or micro-market. It will provide an on-site refreshment option and help your employees stay healthy and productive. And don’t forget to include cold beverages such as bottled water to balance the salt.

For more information about customizing the perfect combination of snacks, beverages and fresh food in your break room, call PB&J Vending at 877-820-8363.