“Eating from the wall” has got a new meaning
Translated by Thomas Ansell
You can quite easily get a hamburger or kroket from a vending wall in the Netherlands, with chains such as Febo spread across the country. You’ll have to travel to Groningen to get an ‘eierbal’, and there is even a phrase in Dutch about getting dinner from behind a glass window: “eating from the wall”. But now in Drenthe you can get farm-fresh milk, eggs, and meat from vending machines across the province. As reported by RTV Drenthe.
With the various regulations around public interaction at the moment, going to the supermarket can involve queuing or edging around other shoppers, but in Venehoeve (Exloermond) you can get milk straight from the farm tap, in Loon (Assen) there is an apple tart vending machine, and Smilde (Midden-Drenthe) has its own ‘tulip-automaat’.
Danny de Graaf runs a meat vending machine with Ruud Duurma in Valthe (Borger-Odoorn). They have had plenty more business since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak. “I think it’s because of the panic buying we saw”, De Graaf says, “in the supermarket there were empty shelves, and people came to our vending machine instead.”
Marloes Hulshof, who runs the ‘Een Lekker Drents eitje’ vending machine in Exloo (Borger-Odoorn) has also seen a rise in business. “In the last two weeks we’ve sold more than normal. There are people that would normally only buy one box of eggs, but you see them taking three or four at the moment”, she says.
Those running the machines must take various precautions, though. The tart vending machine is completely cleaned after every customer, and the meat vending machine has several queuing place markers. Aside from that, all have disinfectant hand gel available.
Hulshof says that they also only now accept contact-less payment, so that people do not have to handle cash.