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Friday, October 3, 2014

Jerry Brown Wants Healthier Vending Machines

Posted By on Fri, Oct 3, 2014 at 3:17 PM


On the Simpsons episode that follows a college-age Lisa falling in love with a British student (which aired in 1995 and took place in a far-off 2010), she goes to a campus vending machine for a “soy-based snack” to calm her down after a series of annoying encounters.

We’re a few years late, but Gov. Jerry Brown has brought us one step closer to that vision, by signing legislation that mandates healthier snack options in public vending machines. According to the Washington Post, at lest “35 percent of food and at least two-thirds of beverages will now have to meet specific nutritional guidelines.” The fact that it only applies to state property might seem weak, but that presumably includes public schools as well as the UC and Cal State systems, with their 700,000 students fiending for a late-night snack to sneak into the library.

The plan is not merely to subsitute Peanut M&Ms with chia seeds; most machines will have to be replaced entirely for this to work. New generations of “smart” vending machines will have interactive screens that display nutritional facts, and monitor the freshness of the food. That means no more year-old granola bars for the rare occasion when you actually resist the temptation to get a Snickers. The Internet of Things is about to make Michelle Obama very happy.

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Pete Kane

Pete Kane

Pete Kane is a total gaylord who is trying to get to every national park before age 40

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