While you might not think much of stopping by a vending machine for a refreshing beverage or snack, these convenient devices have a storied history full of fun facts. From ancient Egypt to modern-day Tokyo, here are five entertaining tidbits about vending machines.
Entertaining Vending Machine Facts
1. The First Vending Machine Was Built in 215 BCE
Long before modern vending machines, a device was built in ancient Egypt to dispense water. Once the weight of a coin triggered a system of levels, a vessel holding water would tip and pour out of a spout. The machine itself is no longer around, but records of it can be found in ancient texts.
2. Liquor Came Before Soda
The first beverage vending machines were made in Paris, France, and dispensed beer, wine, and liquor. Soda pop wouldn’t be the norm until the early 1920s, and these vending machines were still different from their modern counterparts. Instead of bottles or cans, the soda was dispensed into cups.
3. The First American Vending Machine Freshened Breath
While soda machines are staples on street corners and in buildings throughout the United States today, America’s first vending machine was more concerned with freshening breath than quenching thirst. Built in 1888 by the Thomas Adams Gum Company, the first machine dispensed Tutti Frutti gum.
4. High-Tech Tokyo Machines
Moving far past the need for coins, vending machines in Tokyo are getting more and more advanced. Some of these high-tech devices feature face-scanning software that scans users to recommended drinks based on age and gender. Even if no one is buying a product, the machine’s touch screen display advertises different products depending on the time of day and season.
5. Much More Than Food & Drink
Although vending machines that dispense food and drinks are common today, others sell a wide range of goods. These include fishing bait, lottery tickets, books, and cell phones. Even food-focused vending machines offer more than just packaged snacks; hot pizza and French fries are available in some locations!
Vend Alaska has been the premier source for vending machines in Fairbanks, AK, and the surrounding region for more than 70 years. Locally owned and operated, the company takes pride in building relationships with local businesses and providing the best possible customer service. For more information, call (907) 452-2085 or visit the website today.