When you think of vending machines, you usually associate it with snacks and drinks, not something closer to a miniaturized convenience store.
But the new hi-tech vending machines that are the rage with large companies like Amazon and Nestle are like that; micro-markets that can fit in any shop fitouts in Canberra and across the world where employees can buy anything from the standard snacks and drinks, to more eclectic options like sushi and Vietnamese rolls.
In the AU, these new micro-markets are coming to many shop fitouts in Canberra and across the country, led by Morsl (like ‘morsel’), which claims to be the first of its ilk in the land down under. The system underwent a soft-launch at the Artarmon-based IT company, The Missing Link, and is now open for business.
Founder Karla Borland says that she came up with the idea of Morsl after spending 17 years working as a banker in Singapore, Australia and Switzerland, where she noted the lack of healthy food options for employees, something that many workers can relate to, not just in these countries.
She says that she was frustrated with the lack of healthy eating options, which is the basis of the foundation of Morsl; according to her, she looked into the matter in order to find a better solution to vending machines, and that’s where the idea of micro-market originated from.
The micro-market is a self-service automated food and drink marketplace that fits in a lot of workspaces, a fairly novel concept to Australia. However, Americans are far more familiar with them, with micro-markets being the fastest growing segment in the food service industry over in the US, with projections suggesting that there’ll be 35,000 locations in 2022.
A large-size market would cater for at least 500 employees, but Morsl also has small and medium sizes, which can handle 200-300, and 300-500 employees, respectively.
Borland reports that the company has Thinkfood, Fine Fettle, the Bar Counter, and the like for suppliers. All of these suppliers, Borland says, focus on all-natural, organic ingredients. According to her, Mrosl will deliver great snack options for office employees, with suppliers looking to them as a direct distribution platform to office workers.
With customers across the world embracing organic food and healthier lifestyles, having something that provides healthy food in the office space is a huge boon to workers, and a potential gold mine. No doubt this will be picking up traction over time, with more of these ‘micro-markets’ popping up across the country. You might end up working in the vicinity of one in the future.