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heat, humidity and vending


Faith Vending
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    Well, warm weather has finally come to Michigan and along with it stifling humidity. I have a topic to bring up about this issue. I have a few locations in factory breakrooms and out in the open where there is no air conditioning and will not be air conditioning. The candy (any chocolate and the soft candy like mike and ikes) are melting and stuck together etc. A few machines I pulled today> The nuts in a few machines are getting gamey as well. My questions are: Is there any candy that will stand up in the heat and humidity? If there is no a/c should I pass on the location? How should I transport the product in my car to service locations? Any feedback would be most appreciated. Also, some of these locations, even with a/c, are humid. I am thinking of just putting hard candy if there is any doubt. Thanks.

Jim

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Jim, pan candy is a good alternative. I'm still using BBQ peanuts for the summer but will only fill to the point that they will empty it before next service. Chocolate without ac is a no no. Even PMM's will not survive with there candy shell, jelly beans that are made for bulk vending will handle it better then normal jelly beans (harder shell) Gumballs etc. My motto is if it is hard it is a summer candy, other wise it is a fall winter candy.

Which also is the reason that all vendors should be changing there product at least twice a year. This also give you a chance to clean the heads in soap and water and adjust vend settings to reflect current costs.

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What Grumpy said. I bought a case of Gone Fishin' and a case of Runts for this reason.  I will switch out as needed when I service.

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Thanks guys; what are gone fishin? A hard candy. I guess I will switch all chocolate out to hard candy if there is no ac. I have heard Pam spray works with Mike and Ikes and Hot Tamales to keep from sticking together. The bottom line; no ac pass on the location and I will pull my machines now that do not have ac. NEXT YEAR will be different. Have to learn the hard way I guess.

By the way, particularly to new people, I have had a very unpleasant experience with my initial locator and if you would like more info please PM me. I would hate to see anyone make the mistake Eve and I made.

Jim

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Jim

I have a location with M&Is that I have to grease down twice a month. It's air conditioned but near a door that has constant traffic in and out. It's the only place I was able to put the machine in a breakroom. We've had hot and very humid weather here the past month and a half. I don't want to switch out the M&Is because they sell fast. It's one of my best locations and I don't mind doing the extra work because of it.

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Jim

Don't pass on a location because there is no a/c. Just put in pan candy and gumballs, they are not heat sensitive just sun sensitive. Some of my best locations have no a/c, I just tell them this is now the new product mix until fall.

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As I see it there is heat (under 85), extreme heat (over 85 and no fans), humidity and direct sunlight as the big climate problems here in Florida.  Believe it or not,  I do vend MMP without a problem in non A/C industrial warehouses as long as there in no direct sunlight or extreme heat.  Here is what I have experienced over the years.

MMP - Cracks and melts in extreme heat and direct sunlight, but tolerant of  "reasonable" heat.

M&I - Gums up in humidity - Pam may help.  Nothing helps in extreme heat with humidity.

Reeses - Very fragile and melts in any kind of heat or direct sunlight.

Gumballs - Fades and flakes in direct sunlight.  Can actually melt in extreme heat, but tolerant of  "reasonable" heat.

Skittles - The toughest of them all and holds up the best.  They will clump up a bit in extreme heat and fade a bit over time in direct sunlight.  Unfortunately, it's more of a kids candy so I don't vend it in industrial or office locations.

I no longer vend any other brands of candy since they are not worth my time and money any more. 

If your machine is in the sun or in a undesirable environment, try to move it to a better spot if possible.  Also get some card stock from an office store to help block the sun.

As your route grows to hundreds of locations, IMO you don't want to get into swapping around candy products just because the season has changed.  It can be very time consuming (on a large route) since you have to adjust the wheel, clean up the globe and change the display - not to mention having to keep track of and transport a larger inventory of products.  Through trial and error, find the right mix of products for each location's environment and leave it at that (as long as it's profitable of course).  I just accept the fact that I can not vend certain products in certain environments.

Also try vending some toys rather than candy in kid or family oriented locations - no bugs,  spoilage or mess to clean up with toys, but lots of profit!

Jax

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As your route grows to hundreds of locations, IMO you don't want to get into swapping around candy products just because the season has changed.  It can be very time consuming (on a large route) since you have to adjust the wheel, clean up the globe and change the display - not to mention having to keep track of and transport a larger inventory of products.  Through trial and error, find the right mix of products for each location's environment and leave it at that (as long as it's profitable of course).  I just accept the fact that I can not vend certain products in certain environments.

Also try vending some toys rather than candy in kid or family oriented locations - no bugs,  spoilage or mess to clean up with toys, but lots of profit!

Jax

Why would it take longer to service your route if you have removable heads?

Why would you have more product if you are changing product?

All the work is done prior to servicing your route, labels, vend settings, decision of product changes. I just did part of my west route, 17 locations 34 heads all changed and now more profitable then before, no added time to the route service. Don't you do preventive maintenace, this is a great time to ensure all top locks are the same, and lubricated on this portion of the route, change coin mechs that have been serviced prior to doing the route, and the most important cleaning of the globe and conversions.

If your route is old like mine, there are many locations that are too generous with the vend amounts, should I carry a container and dump the product in a vessel and then adjust the vend amount, refill the dirty globe, and leave the same selection for another ten years?

This is not how I do business, I believe you should be proactive instead of reactive, and I really do like clean.

People get tired of the same selection, at almost all the locations I did this at the staff were very happy for a change, and commented on that the other guy never did this. I did it for selfish reasons, I wanted to extend my service cycle, so I changed all of them to larger globes and pan candy and gumballs. They now all use the same key and they all have NG coin mechs which are a little newer and more reliable.

PS

This is harder for people with triples without removable containers, but in my mind still necessary.

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Pan candy are runts, gone fishing, and any hard shelled candy.

 

Its 95 degrees here today.  I am gonna have issues with a few places.  I can see it now.  Its just tough for me to manage my time sometimes to get it all done.

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This is great stuff everyone and a lotta good ideas. One other concern I had was transporting the product when you service machines. The other day I left my car running all day when I serviced due to the heat and humidity. Maybe I'm being paranoid. Most locations have ac so I have to carry the mm's and m&i as well as the other stuff. I guess a huge cooler would be a good investment. I have gotten it down to rp's; mm's, pmm, m&i, gb's, runts and cashews. Who carries gone fishing? I am starting to get into toys and tats using Gary's rack idea. I agree this is a great way to go, no heat, humidity, or ant issues and a nice profit.

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Good Day all....

In Connecticut it is just beginning ti get hot..but even when it was 70 degree's the interior of the car was very hot...I tried something new and it seemed to work.

I use a large plastic bin for carrying the extra candy bags around Like a clothes starage bi you get at walmart for like 4.00...I then took the frozen cooling packs..like the ones that show up in any package with perishable items(my wife gets medication evry month and we get these all the time when UPS delivers)  I put these in a resealable bag and tossed two or three in the container.

By the end of the day the candy was good and the temperature in the closed bin was quite cool...

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Why would it take longer to service your route if you have removable heads?

Why would you have more product if you are changing product?

My 2 cents on those questions...

Unless there is some kind of previously known issue, I personally don't make the decision to change the product until I visit the location.  My style is "if it ain't broke (and profitable), don't fix it".  So when I do decide to change out a product, I have to walk back to the van, unscrew the globe, reset or replace the wheel, screw back the globe, change the display, add the new candy and walk back to the machine.  Sometimes the machine is next to the door and other times it is a 5 minute walk to the back side of the building.  For just one head, no big deal.  But if I had to do it 20 times per day, it would add considerable service time.  My objective is rapid in-out servicing.  Now to cut down on the time, you could have a number of pre-set globes ready for swapping if you feel that is necessary for your route.

I only carry 5 food products.  If I took special requests all the time, then I would have to carry 10 or so products.  In the past when I took special requests (like MM plain), the location didn't buy enough to make it cost effective and I had to eventually throw it out.  Besides, in a plant with 100 people, what's makes the 2 or 3 people that asked for something special representative of the other 97 employee's eating habits?  I personally only want products that appeal to the masses.  (MP, MI, Reeses, Skittles and Gumballs are those products for me.)

I have cut down my product select to 4 candies and gumballs, however my revenue has not dropped due to removing the special requests that didn't move that well.  No one has boycotted the machine because I removed the hot tamales!  I have one location (as an example) where I tried vending many products and they only bought MMP and MI - nothing else moved.  So yeah, I will keep those selections there for 10 years.  I only stock my machines with enough product to last for 60 days to ensure I am not vending stale product.  If the globe need cleaned, then I will clean it.

To each his own on this topic.  The beauty of being the CEO of our own business is making these types of decisions that we feel is best suited for our particular business situation.  Happy vending - it sure beats working!

Jax

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Jim.......you can buy Gone Fishing at Sams online.  Its a good price and I think it includes delivery.

I use a big cooler with those ice paks.  It works very well.

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Thanks to all who responded; very helpful. Eve and I have made enough mistakes to write a book.. but I agree with Jax- sure beats working! Amen to that. I will finish checking my locations by Tues and have a better handle on what I need to do by then. I am going to Sam's today to get more skittle and runts and will order some gone fishing candy from them. This vending is a constant work in progress and we love it! Have a great week.

Jim

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I may be a day late and a quarter short, but:

A cooler is a must for me.  I bring it into the house the day before I plan to run the route so it is cooled to the house temperature by the next morning.  The candy is also the same temp as the house, so no sudden temp extremes to the candy by the hot vehicle.  The cooler also helps keep the candy organized all together where all I have to do is open the door and get out what I want.  It also doesn't slide all over the back of the jeep like individual boxes do (d/t its weight with all the candy together)

I have a motorcycle repair shop w/o air that uses only fans and the PMM's did okay there last summer.  No sunlight either.  And I have had a/c places and sunlight with cracked PMM's in one month.     Ginger

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Eve/Jim:

I have a laerge wheeled cooler- like the type you take to the lake or for a picnic. I use re-freezable ice packs and keep the candy in there when its in the car. Any inventory is in a refrigerator in the basement. Hope that helps.

Regards,,

Philo

 

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We just got our power back last night; had a tornado rip thru the neighborhood. I am spraying down the mike and ikes and hot tamales and replacing some with hard candy. Next is to weed out the remaining loser locations and get this business going, I have learned a lot in 4 months, and will learn a lot more I'm sure

Jim

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Hi,

 

Just for the summer I was thinking of replacing my skittles and M& I with Gone Fishin.  How does Gone Fishin compare to other fruit candies?  Any complaints by the customers?  Thanks in advance for the feedback my present Gone Fishin vendors.

 

Coop

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Philo,

How does the candy handle the refrigerator..My wife thought that the Pm&m might crack because of the temperature change when taken out and put in the machine's...and of course..Chocolate and refrigeration is sometimes a concern...

Any one got any thoughts on this?:huh:?:cool:

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Hi,

 

Just for the summer I was thinking of replacing my skittles and M& I with Gone Fishin.  How does Gone Fishin compare to other fruit candies?  Any complaints by the customers?  Thanks in advance for the feedback my present Gone Fishin vendors.

 

Coop

I bought a case of Gone Fishin...........have not used them yet.  Cant help ya there Mr Coop Man.
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