Two healthy vending machines set up at Mt. Carmel High School

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healthyvending1In Rancho Penasquitos, the Sundevils have some choices they can make that rare at any high school. If one isn’t interested in the normal assortment of chocolate/sugar/salty snakes and carbonated beverages perhaps a machine that vends pita chips and coconut milk is more appealing?

Mt. Carmel High School, part of the Poway Unified School District, is participating in a program just beginning in the county. The aim is to provide a choice of healthier snacks to students. A pair of alternative vending machines have been installed in the Penasquitos school, one of them in the football stadium, where soccer games and track meets are also held.

Many believe the message of healthier eating choices has finally gotten through to the new generation of young people. The time may have come that school-age folks will accept healthier habits when it comes to food. The lower calories and sugar in snacks such as pita chips and coconut milk and the subsequent difference in flavor might be more appetizing to a generation reared on more healthy food as babies.

The vending devices have been placed on the Sundevil campus as a test. The selling performance of the various items will determine which foods remain available, and whether the alternative vending machines are profitable enough to stay. 25% of those profits are paid back to the student body.healthyvending2

With a machine in the stadium, which is often open to the public, the benefit of healthier snacks is available to more of the population, as well as the students. Vending machines of the healthy variety assist educational facilities in conforming to government limits on the amount of fat and sugar sold on their campuses.

Health comes with a price, of course. 11 ounces of apple juice will set you back seventy-five cents. Pure coconut water goes for 2 dollars, and muscle milk sells for $2.25.

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