DALLAS -- SandenVendo America is celebrating three-quarters of a century in the vending business this year. Demonstrating its continued commitment to improvement, the company received an iSpot award for innovation at the National Automatic Merchandising Association's 2012 OneShow in Las Vegas in April.
Founded in Kansas City, MO, in 1937 by brothers Elmer F. and John T. Pierson, the original Vendo organization marketed a novel bottled cold-beverage vending machine that used a patented lid which could be attached to coolers. Nicknamed "red top," the vending lid moved the opening to the bottle rather than the bottle to the opening.
Vendo acquired its principal competitor, Vendorlator, in 1956 and -- as The Vendo Co. -- went on to develop much of the technology underlying the full-line vending revolution. Vendo Co. was acquired by Japan’s Sanden Corp. in 1988 and as SandenVendo America moved from Fresno, CA, to the Sanden International (U.S.) headquarters in the greater Dallas area.
photo | CLASSIC: The Vendo 39, which held 39 8-fl.oz. Coke bottles, was sold between 1949 and 1957. More than 80,000 were manufactured. Restored V-39s can sell for thousands of dollars.
The company recalls that over its long history it has seen technology advance from ice-bath styled refrigeration tubs and insulation made of redwood bark to pioneering development of CO2-charged compressors and refrigeration systems. SandenVendo reports that it is the first manufacturer to employ an HFC-free cyclopentane-blown, liquid foam injection process for insulation.
The NAMA iSpot Gold award recognized SandenVendo’s development of the Pouchlink Beverage Vending System, designed to deliver popular high-juice-content and flavored water beverages to consumers in flexible, re-closable squeeze pouches made of 100% recyclable material. An early prototype appeared at NAMA's 2008 national convention.
The Pouchlink can hold 1,000 containers, supplied on 250-ct. spools and six 1.3-gal. bag-in-box concentrate containers. It offers seven selections and six flavors, along with chilled pure water. A window allows patrons to watch the filling process.
A built-in ozone sanitation system keeps the water system clean without requiring chemicals. According to the manufacturer, Pouchlink consumes up to 80% less energy than typical refrigerated-cabinet venders and the pouches use 75% less material than conventional packages. The pouches themselves yield up to 90% less waste volume than cans or bottles.
Everything needed to restock one Pouchlink vender can fit into the back seat of an average car and be wheeled into the location by one person. One spool of 250 pouches is equivalent to 10 cases of cans or bottles.
Pouchlink was created by the UK's Green Drinks Co. (Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire), founded by entrepreneur Adam Green. It measures 32.5" wide x 72" high x 34.75" deep, uses R-134a refrigerant gas and is supplied with a 12-ft. power cord equipped with ground-fault circuit interrupter. Backlighting for the sign face and illumination for the cabinet interior and vend port is provided by light-emitting diodes.
photo | POUCHLINK: Showing off prize-winning SandenVendo Pouchlink cold beverage vender at NAMA OneShow are company’s Scott Winters and Jennifer Elizondo. The vender prepares juice drinks or flavored water from bag-in-box concentrate, mixing each serving on demand and filling a flexible, re-closable pouch for delivery to the customer. It offers six flavors plus pure water, and will hold as many as 1,000 pouches on 250-ct. spools. The pouches are 100% recyclable.