Vending machine cafe signals lower reliance on labour
The concept of vending machine dining could soon pop up in more places in the heartlands and workplaces of Singapore, following the pilot launch of an unmanned vending machine cafe in Sengkang. At such cafes, using the Chef-in-Box machine for hot meals will start with a menu displayed on a touchscreen and selecting dishes such as Chicken Bolognese, Nasi Goreng Istimewa or Vegetarian Rice Noodle, for S$3.50 to $5.00. Consumers can pay by cash, Nets FlashPay or credit card. About three minutes later, the meals and cutlery are ready for collection. The first vending machine cafe, or VendCafe, was launched at Anchorvale Drive and is operated by JR Vending, the company behind Chef-in-Box machines. The year-long pilot project from Spring Singapore and the Housing and Development Board (HDB) is targeted at residents living within a 400m radius to provide them with more around-the-clock food options.