LOS ANGELES -- All Pro Beverage Manufacturing is now producing its Aroma super-automatic single-cup coffee machines and Fructomat bag-in-box juice dispensers in the United States. The machines have already established a strong American presence, and All Pro is planning for major expansion in workplaces from coast to coast.
The countertop bulk-load coffee machines can serve from as few as 10 to as many as 200 people, and can be fitted with a payment mechanism for unattended operation. Fructomat bag-in-box juice dispensers, offered as manual delivery systems or vending machines, can serve locations ranging from small offices up to high-volume, high-traffic accounts.
Partners in the new manufacturing venture are Dmitry Sharin, a full-line vending veteran, and Ed Hill, a coffee service operator who's been involved in many aspects of the beverage industry. Each of the operators began by importing the equipment -- the Aroma line from Italy and the Fructomat from Austria -- for use in his own company, and then distributing the equipment to a growing base of OCS and vending operators.
All Pro not only manufactures the machines, but also the products dispensed through them, benefiting its customers by providing a single supply source. It sells the machines at wholesale and direct resale, and also supplies parts and provides service for them.
"We've set up distributors across the country and we're looking for more," Hill told VT. "Our coffee machines are a perfect solution to bring specialty coffeehouse drinks to the breakroom, and Fructomat answers the need for healthier beverages delivered in an eco-friendly manner. The equipment lines meet the demands of consumers alone, and both together provide a hot and cold beverage solution when placed side by side."
Hill has worked in the beverage industry since 1994 at various echelons, including wholesale equipment supply and the supply of bag-in-box juices and bulk CO2. In 2002, he began manufacturing Aroma super-automatic coffee machines in Italy. At the same time, he built his office coffee service operation, Espresso Etc., by selling local businesses on the coffeehouse variety, gourmet quality and push-button convenience of the Aroma system. He also set up distributors across the country, and has since sold several thousand of the machines to the U.S. office coffee service market.
Sharin, in search of a healthier, eco-friendly beverage solution for his own operation, discovered the Austrian-made Fructomat bag-in-box machine in 2010. The juice concentrates are formulated to be lower in calories than regular juices, and the bag-in-box packaging material is lighter than most bulk containers, which reduces air pollution caused by transport and the solid waste associated with single-serve bottles.
Fructomat machines had been in operation in two dozen countries for several years, but not in the U.S. The California vendor soon established Fructomat USA, becoming the first operator and exclusive distributor of the machine in the Americas. | SEE STORY
Several hundred machines are currently in operation in schools, universities, convenience stores and cafeterias, churches and businesses nationwide.
Sharin has since secured the rights to produce the machines and is manufacturing the bag-in-box beverage concentrates in the U.S. for domestic distribution. The drinks, all low in calories and dispensed into a cup at the press of a button, include pomegranate and honey green teas, lemonade, cranberry juice, sport drinks and flavored vita-waters.
Sharin and Hill, who had met years earlier through an industry associate, joined forces last year to establish All Pro Beverage Manufacturing. Their first endeavor was to relocate the Aroma factory from Italy to Los Angeles. Production began in January 2011, and is shifting into high gear as demand for the cup-at-a-time machines accelerates, Hill reported.
The flagship Aroma 5500 fresh bean-grinding model features a volumetric coffee dosing system that guarantees the exact amount of coffee needed for each individual brew. The machine incorporates an external whole bean coffee hopper and four soluble product canisters. It offers pushbutton selection of any of 12 gourmet hot beverages including espresso, Italian roast coffee and cafe Americano. It instantly froths soluble creamer and dispenses it directly into each cup for lattes and cappuccinos. Soluble drinks like chai tea and hot chocolate also can be selected.
All Pro roasts its own beans for Aroma coffee machines, and produces the soluble French vanilla, cappuccino, chocolate and chai tea for them. They're packed six 2-lb. bags per case.
The compact Aroma 5500 machine measures 20" wide, 24" deep and 24" high (31" with external hopper attached) and weighs 85 lbs. It can be connected to a permanent water line or to an independent water reservoir; its low-pressure delivery system eliminates the need for special plumbing. The unit plugs into a standard 110V. electrical outlet and draws 1000 watts.
The Aroma 4000 has many of the same features as its bean-grinding stablemate, but uses freeze-dried coffee rather than beans; it offers 20 selections. The 4000 model measures 17.5" wide, 22" deep and 21.5" high and weighs 65 lbs.
PREPARING TO GROW
With the Aroma line rolling swiftly off the production line and bolstering its presence in breakrooms across the country, All Pro is now gearing up to manufacture the Fructomat juice dispenser at its Los Angeles plant.
Countertop Fructomat models include the CoolDis 4, Midi 4 and Midi 6. They offer four and six beverage varieties, respectively, and allow the patron to mix any two beverages, and to carbonate the drink if desired.
Since All Pro began manufacturing the bag-in-box concentrate for the machines, it has reformulated the entire line as a low-calorie beverage alternative, reconstituted at a ratio of 19 parts water to 1 part juice. The drinks are sweetened with Sucralose and contain only 10 to 20 calories per serving.
The freestanding Cool Mix model offers four drink selections and accommodates an external cup holder. For the highest-volume sites, Fructomat's flagship Maxi 6VE full-size vending machine provides a built-in cup dispenser, offers from four to six selections, and retains the flavor-mixing capability and the option to choose still or carbonated beverages.
Machines can be connected to a portable water line or supplied with water pumped in from a five-gallon bottle.
All Fructomat vending machines are MDB compliant.
More information can be had by calling All Pro Beverage Manufacturing at (562) 634-3030.