Starting in 2013, San Antonio will be one two cities debuting new vending machines aimed at providing healthier beverages to consumers.
According to the American Beverage Association, San Antonio and Chicago will feature the first line of soda vending machines labeled with a prominently labeled calorie count, along with flashing messages asking consumers to think before they drink.
The program is an attempt by the association to get ahead of upcoming government regulations in the Affordable Care Act requiring calorie counts to become more visible. The idea is to make Americans pay closer attention to the calorie counts in what they consume, thereby improving heath (and lowering health care costs over time). The program comes after hamburger giant McDonald's began posting calorie counts on its menus.
New machines will also feature electronic displays reminding customers that “Calories Count.” The displays will also stream slogans like “Check then Choose,” and “Try a Low-Calorie Beverage.”