By JUSTIN WILLIAMS
SnackLite is making the move to expand its market. SnackLite is now expanding to schools and local business in Cobb County.
Co-owners Luis Fuentes, 26, of Marietta, Ga., and Juan Fuentes, 25, of Marietta, Ga., objective for SnackLite is to have machines where members of the Cobb County community are learning, working and playing. SnackLite began its journey after a six month trial with Kennesaw State University (KSU). Having a great deal of success with their testing period, and receiving a $1,000 grant after winning KSU’s “ Concept 2 Reality” competition, SnackLite decided to expand their market, focusing on local business and schools it felt would benefit from having one of their vending machines.
Iron Clutch Fitness was one of the first companies that SnackLite reached out to. SnackLite felt that Iron Clutch Fitness would be excited at the opportunity to have their very own vending machine that specialized in proving healthy foods and beverages. It would allow members of the gym to conveniently purchase a healthy snack or protein shake before or after their workout without having to leave the gym.
It was not until recently that SnackLite made its debut in the Cobb County Schools. Bells Ferry Elementary school was the first to have a SnackLite vending machine.
There have been a number of positive reactions to the vending machine’s introduction to McCleskey Middle school’s campus. Students and teachers are very happy with the prices and the selections of healthy products provided by SnackLite’s vending machine. Not only is it the first healthy snack vending machine in McCleskey, but it’s the first snack vending machine to ever be introduced to the school as opposed to previous vending machines that only provide beverages.
“I’m extremely surprised and excited on how successful our machine is doing at McCleskey,” said Luis. “We are having to refill much more frequently than we anticipated it’s great!”
Luis is also able to cut a check back to the school for its partnership. Being a McCleskey Middle school alumnus, Luis feels great in being able to provide the students with nutritious snacks, as well as giving financial support to a school he once attended.
McCleskey Middle school’s SnackLite vending machine is located in its eighth grade pods’ common area. Luis and Juan Fuentes felt that this would be a perfect location for their machine because eighth grade students are at the age where the bodies are starting to change and maintain a balanced and healthy diet is important. This is also an age where students start to develop their personalities, and exposing them to healthier alternatives can potentially lead to lifelong habits of good nutrition and help remove the stigma that foods that are healthy are expensive and taste bad.
Through its research, SnackLite discovered that Americans under the age of 25 are on the path to be the first generation expected to live shorter lives than their parents because of diet-related illnesses. SnackLite wants to be a part of movement that helps to prevent this from being a reality and this where it developed its slogan “Eat right, Get Active, and Live Better.” SnackLite is marketing themselves as more than just a vending machine company but a lifestyle.
SnackLite’s vending machines differ from your traditional vending machines in that it offers products that are much healthier than the average vending machines, which only provide sugary and salty foods.
“All of our products are chosen with one thing in mind, better nutrition at an affordable price,” said Luis. “Through our established relationships with the nation’s largest natural, organic and sports nutrition distributors, we are able to offer you more options at lower product costs.”
Some of its most popular products are Clif Bars, Fiber One Bars, Kashi Bars, Veggie Chips, Muscle Milk, Vita Coconut Water, Vitamin Water Zero and Starbucks.
Each of Snacklite’s machines is customized to fit the institution’s needs. A representative, or Lite provider as it is called, personally meets with prospective clients and determine what products they would like to incorporate into their vending machine from SnackLite’s vast inventory. Larger institutions with greater vending sales and needs can also receive rewards from SnackLite. Rewards vary from free snacks for a week, sponsored field days and compensative commission checks.
“Current ‘black box’ vending has not changed products or machines in three decades,” said Juan. “Our machine was created to offer an entirely new experience everything from card accepting payments to refrigeration was designed to offer easy access to a convenient Litesnack.”
Each SnackLite machine offers more than 40 selections in a dual-zone temperature controlled dispenser. The dual-zone temperature control allows for a larger variety of products to be house in one machine. In addition to offering a cashless payment options, each machine is also remotely monitored to ensure a full inventory off products is sustained and service for system errors is provided without hesitation. The machines are also eco-friendly built with a low energy consumption device; the machines use triple pane thermal glass so less energy is needed to power the machine and LED lights.
The future of SnackLite lies in further expansion into Cobb County with a focus on office spaces and schools. Recently winning “Best Vending Service” by Social Kennesaw gives them the confidence to market themselves throughout the county.
If a “Lite Provider” does not come knocking on your door, no worries. You can always reach SnackLite through its website at www.snacklite.com.
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