Campus vending machines deliver healthy snack choice

bottle

Students and staff can grab a healthy snack or drink, following the introduction of new vending machines offering healthy food choices across Monash University campuses.

In all, 35 new machines have been rolled out across Monash Clayton, Caulfield, Parkville and Peninsula campuses.

Users can select a food or drink from the machines based on the traffic light health classification system - where green is the healthiest choice, amber an indication to choose carefully and red a reminder to limit consumption of these foods.

Monash is the first university to implement the Victorian Government’s Healthy Choices Guidelines in their new vending machines.

Victoria’sState Public Health Nutritionist, Veronica Graham said it was a great step.

“Congratulations to Monash University for leading the way to ensure students, staff and visitors can access healthier drinks and snacks from vending machines across its many campuses.”

Nutrition Australia's Program Manager for the Healthy Eating Advisory Service, Margaret Rozman, commended the initiative.

More than half the drinks and snacks provided in the new vending machines are classified as green, ensuring that healthy snacks are always an easy option.

“Vending machines are a convenient way to grab a drink or snack when you need it. It’s fantastic to see Monash University students now have access to healthier options that will give them the energy and alertness they need to fuel their studies.”

The initiative is part of Monash’s goal to be an accredited Healthy Workplace under the Victorian Government’s Healthy Workplace Achievement Program.

In 2017, Monash received government recognition for the Achievement Program best practice benchmarks for Alcohol, Mental Health, Smoking and Physical Activity.

Monash continues to work towards achieving the program’s Healthy Eating benchmark by increasing the availability of healthy food choices in retail, catering and vending.

Now that Monash has increased the availability of healthy food and drink choices in vending, the University is improving the healthiness of food and drinks available through catering and retail outlets.

“This is just the first step towards improving the availability of healthy food choices for staff and students,” the University’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr Vicki Ashton, said.

“We are now looking at how we can work with our food retailers and caterers to ensure our people always have access to healthy food on campus.”