If you are in the vending business, then chances are you sell chocolate. With a melting point of 86 to 90 degrees and non-climate controlled warehouses, it’s easy to find yourself with a sticky mess. The last thing a vending operator wants is customer complaints of Snickers bars being melted in a vending machine.
Operators in the south must deal with temperature issues year-round, but even those who are north of the Mason-Dixon line still have 3-4 months of summer heat and must deal with melting chocolate. When faced with the prospect of cooling a large warehouse and seeing electric bills quadruple, what’s the best way to keep chocolate in a quality state until it’s purchased by the customer from your machine?
If you’re not prekitting and still using old school vending by picking off the back of the truck, then this isn’t new. You keep cases of chocolate stored in a climate controlled area until loaded in the truck – commonly called “The Candy Room”. Driver loads the cases onto the truck in a refrigerated portion of the truck or in a cooler.
But if you are prekitting then this poses a more difficult challenge. Most snacks and chips are not temperature sensitive and do not require special treatment. The prekit line is in the warehouse – preferable close to where the trucks are loaded – and the air temperature is too hot to store and pick chocolate. When you move the chocolate to the candy room, you now must prekit in 2 different areas.
What are some best practices to pick chocolate and keep looking good all the way through delivery to the vending machine?
With LightSpeed, you can create a separate zone for chocolate and pick and pack in the candy room. A tote ticket is printed for each order matching it up with the items from other zones that are part of that service order. LightSpeed allows you to pick up to 6 orders at once which helps make for a very efficient process given that chocolate is small and easy to pick.