by Michael Hone
Still rare in Brazil, food and beverage vending machines set to debut at airports
BRASILIA – Almost unheard of in most of Brazil, food and beverage vending machines are soon set to debut in airports across the country. Infraero, the government-owned company that runs all the airports in Brazil, inked a deal on Friday with three private companies to provide the machines in 12 of the nation’s largest airports.
As Brazil continues its meteoric rise into the ranks of developed nations, and as it continues to prepare to host the 2014 Wold Cup and 2016 Olympic Games, it is doing what was once inconceivable: using machines to replace people. In an era of full employment and booming economic times, perhaps using vending machines was the inevitable, albeit lamentable solution to feeding the throngs of travelers expected in coming years.
The deal provides for 143 points of sale at 12 of the busiest commercial airports. The machines are expected to be put into service before the end of this year—just in time for the peak South American travel season. The concessions were bundled into eight lots which were auctioned off electronically in August of this year.
The machines will offer non-alcoholic beverages such as sodas, juices and water, snacks and sandwiches, plus coffee and tea. The contracts stipulate that the machines must accept at least two forms of payment. One of the goals of the program is to diversify and enhance the availability of food and beverage products available to travelers. Another goal is to promote greater competition to the restaurants and kiosks thereby reducing overall costs to passengers and other users.
Among the airports that will receive the vending machines are: Recife, Pernambuco; Fortaleza, Ceara; Guarulhos, Viracopos and Congonhas, Sao Paulo; Confins and Pampulha, Minas Gerais; Brasilia, DF; Cuiaba, Moto Grosso; Manaus, Amazonas; Salvador, Bahia; Galleon and Santos Dumont, Rio de Janeiro; Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul; and, Curitiba, Parana.
Brazilian online news source for this article: G1 Business