About lttvending

LTT Vending has 50 years experience, providing vending mahcines and coffee machines to businesses nationwide. Whatever your vending needs LTT have the best solution for you.

A single serve coffee for the Christmas season.

As we all gear up for Christmas, buying presents and food, preparing for the party season, a caffiene kick is needed to keep us warm and spur us on, out into the cold.

What is called for is a luxurious speciality coffee that is full of the rich and indulgent flavours of Christmas.

A Mars Hazelnut Latte, served from a Flavia Coffee Machine, hits all the right notes. Hazelnut coffee from Alterra Coffee Roasters, exclusively for the FLAVIA Creation 400 single serve coffee machine, is a luxurious blend of medium roasted coffee beans and continental and Christmassy flavour of Hazelnut.

The indlugent drinks for Flavia function allows the Hazelnut Coffee to be blended with the Mars Swirl for a Caramel Latte Twist.

Hazelnut Mars Latte from Flavia Coffee Machine

Try adding Flavia's Mars Swirl to the Hazelnut Coffee from Alterra Coffee Roasters for a Christmas Indelugent Coffee.

 

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The Changing Tastes of the British Workplace

 

Coffee in the Office

Cappuccino at work

Ever since the 19th Century tea has been the most widely consumed hot beverage in the world, and is synonymous with the British way of life. In recent years the popularity for herbal and fruit teas has increased as people become concerned about the effects of caffeine and more aware of the benefits of herbal teas i.e. peppermint tea aids digestion.

This shift away from the traditional ‘builders’ tea is exacerbated by the increasing popularity of coffee in Britain. The opening of Starbucks in the early 1970’s, gave rise to the “coffee shop culture,” that started out in North America and gradually translated across the pond to the extent that in 2010 British coffee house – Costa Coffee, had overtaken Starbucks in the U.K.

The “coffee shop culture” has developed the British publics’ taste for coffee. People are more aware of roasts, blends and strengths and enjoy indulgent Cappuccinos and Lattes. This increased coffee knowledge and the desire to recreate the coffee shop experience at home has even permeated to the household. Freeze-dried coffee brands, such as Nescafe now produce specialist coffee ranges including Colombia and Green Blend – designed to taste more like the origins coffee in coffee houses and to contain more antioxidants which scientists believe can reduce the risk of Cancer.

If the tastes of the British public have changed regarding the hot drinks the consume, and we are changing our shopping habits along with our culture, why are these changing tastes not reflected in the hot drinks provision we have at work.

Manufacturing sites may not require sophisticated coffee, it is more likely that these employees just want the same quality of tea and coffee they have at home. But does the vending machine on site provide even that basic choice? Many older vending machines only serve a basic coffee from a household brand, not even serving a tea that they enjoy drinking.

Some offices feel that hot drinks machines are an unnecessary expense and prefer to supply a kettle along with household products or in some cases supplies are brought in by the staff themselves. This basic provision is ideal for sites where coffee breaks are a social situation, where staff can catch up whist waiting for the kettle to boil. However if an office is looking to reduce their energy consumption or time spent cleaning the kitchen areas each day, then an office coffee machine may be the most suitable alternative for them.

There are a number of state of the art hot drink machines available that have been designed specifically for these office sites. Effective insulation of water in the tank means they are more energy efficient than a kettle and serve a wide range of hot drinks including tea, coffees, hot chocolate and indulgent drinks that are more popular with the majority of office staff.

The U.K.’s most popular office coffee machine is the Flavia Creation 400 which serves a range of 25 coffee shop style hot drinks.

Larger companies and offices require a robust hot drinks vending machine to serve consistent quality beverages throughout the workday. Consistency and quality need not mean that workers can’t have the diverse range they have come to expect from coffee shops. Traditional hot drinks vending machines served very poor quality beverages and people would rather go without than drink brown water or vending machine tea.

The modern hot drinks vending machines are now able to serve coffee shop quality hot drinks in 12oz (Costa Small) cups with a sip lid. Their beverages are made using real milk and Fairtrade or freshly ground coffee.

Along with this innovation hot drinks vending machines are now typically built to an  A++ energy efficiency rating. Meaning there is no better time to improve the beverages available at work and provide your staff with a facility they will really appreciate.

10 Reasons your Office needs a Hot Drinks Vending Machine.

Why have a vending machine? Many businesses believe they have no requirement for a vending machine this list gives ten reasons why they do!

  1. Vending machines can provide constantly high quality refreshment throughout the day. The choice of hot drinks, ease of use and consistency often make vending machines a hassle free solution to providing hot drinks. No more complaining about the way your colleague makes your cup of tea or going without if you work late and the canteen is closed.
  2. Typically communal kitchen areas become untidy and staff can argue about whose turn it is to tidy it. Whose responsibility is it to buy the tea and coffee supplies in your office? Who has to go out for milk? Many table top hot drinks machines can come with an operating agreement to ensure they are regularly cleaned by a service operator who also fills the ingredients etc.
  3. When using a kettle staff can take can take an average of 5 minutes per hot drink, across a week this is an average of an hour spent each week making hot drinks, rather than working? What impact does this lost time have on your business’ productivity? Is your company losing money with this wasted time?
  4. A number of offices opt for using kettles to provide their refreshments however they are not designed for consistent, heavy duty use. As a result the heating element breaks after a few months and it has to be replaced. Service agreements on table top hot drinks machines ensure they are guaranteed to be fixed by a trained engineer, minimising the time your staff are left without a drinks facility.
  5. The amount of energy consumed by a kettle could be used to power a fridge for a week! Have you ever thought about how much money your office spends on energy bills and the simple steps you could take to reduce this? Modern vending machines have an A++ energy efficiency rating. Saving you money on energy bills and contributing to CSR goals.
  6. Your business may provide a subsidised refreshment facility on site for staff to use. Did you know the average operating costs of a bank of vending machines are up to 90% lower than that of a manned canteen?
  7. Staff appreciates when a company improves the facilities for them. By improving the quality of the hot drinks on offer can boost morale and thereby improve productivity.
  8. Visitors to a business find the provisions of high quality refreshments a professional and preferable alternative to the traditional basic tea and coffee made by the receptionist in a mug.
  9. Companies looking to enhance their corporate image often provide their staff with vending machines branded in the company colour scheme. This promotes the corporate identity whilst providing a relaxing environment to meet, spend a lunch break and socialise.
  10. Many vending machines are available at NIL COST and a good vending company will go through all payment options available to ensure you receive the most cost effective solution. Therefor providing beverage facilities need not increase company expenditure.

How to Guide ~ Volume 1

LTT Vending’s How to Guide to fix simple errors with your Flavia Creation 400 Office Coffee Machine.

LTT Vending’s How-to-Guide for the Flavia Creation 400 guides you through the simple steps to solving the typical Flavia Creation 400 coffee machine errors, so you can get your office coffee machine up and running in just a few minutes.

ERROR 328 ~ Pack Eject Timeout and ERROR 321 ~ Pack Inject Timeout

Flavia Creation 400 front with sachet

Flavia Creation 400 Machine with door open and drink sachet within

These errors mean a Flavia Drinks Sachet is stuck in the machine – here’s how you can remove the sachet and test your machine.

1. Place your palm on the front of the machine door with your fingers cupped underneath.  Brace the machine with your other hand and pull the door towards you with a sharp tug! It is designed to come off – you will NOT break it! You will hear a satisfying noise…

Flavia Creation 400 with the Front Off

Flavia Creation 400 coffee machine with the Front Off

2. Now the door is off you can look inside the machine for the rogue sachet… it may be attached to something that looks like a fork. The fork moves so wiggle the sachet to release it, you can also trim it with scissors if you prefer. If the Pin is still stuck in the sachet switch the machine off and on, this will reset the machine; the Pin will retract and drop the sachet.

Flavia Machine Sachet Fork

Flavia Machine Sachet Fork

3. Take a damp cloth and wipe inside the machine to remove any residue. Then slide the door back in.

4. Finally switch the machine

off and on to reset – and the machine is now operational again.

10 Reasons to get a Vending Machine.

Many businesses think they have no need for a vending machine.This is the list of Top 10 reasons why they do!

1. Vending Machines provide a constantly high quality refreshment 24/7. No more complaining about the way your colleague makes your cup of tea, or going without if you work late and the canteen closes.

2. Communal kitchen areas become messy and staff can argue about whose turn it is to clean it. Many vending machines can come with an operating service to ensure they are regularly cleaned by a service operator who fills the ingredients.

3. When using a kettle, staff take an average of 5 minutes per drink, across a week this is an average of an hour spent making refreshments rather than working.

4. Kettles are not designed for consistent, heavy-duty use as a result the heating element breaks after a few months and it has to be replaced. Service agreements on vending machines ensure they are guaranteed to be fixed by a trained engineer.

5. The amount of energy consumed by a kettle could be used to power a fridge for a week! Modern vending machines have an A++ energy efficiency rating. Saving you money on energy bills and contributing to Corporate Social Responsibility goals.

6. The average running costs of a range of vending machines are up to 90% lower than that of a manned canteen.

7. Staff appreciate when a company improves facilities for them, this boost in moral can improve their productivity.

8. Visitors to a business find the provision of high quality refreshments a professional and preferable alternative to basic tea and coffee made by a receptionist in a mug.

9. Banks of vending machines can be branded and used to promote a relaxing environment to meet, spend a lunch break and socialise. Small kitchenette areas allow for the heating of food but rarely an area to eat and relax.

10. Many vending machines are available FREE and a good vending company will go through all options available to ensure you receive the most cost-effective solution.

What Hot Drink Do You Prefer? Things to consider before investing in hot drinks facilities.

When deciding to invest in an office coffee machine, it is important to first understand the requirements and tastes of those who will be using it, namely your staff and visitors.

In recent years extensive consumer research has identified the hot drinks preferences of the U.K.’s workplace consumers. By understanding the results of this research, you will ensure the facilities you provide will be cost-effective and fulfill the needs of your staff.

Coffees are a balance between the level of Roast – developing the acidity or intensity of flavours from the coffee bean, and Taste – the combination of flavours, textures and sensations that stimulate the taste buds. Research has shown that 42% of workplace coffee consumers prefer the refreshing, sweet and clean taste of Light & Smooth coffees. Whereas only 8% enjoy the dark roasted intensity and full-bodied flavours of Dark and Intense coffees from areas such as Sumatra.

The other 50% of workplace consumers prefer a Medium roasted coffee, however these can be further subcatagorised by their taste sensation. 29% prefer a Medium and Balanced coffee like those from Colombia, for their distinctive rounded flavours . Whilst 21% prefer the Bright taste experience and fruity aromas found in coffees from Papua New Guinea for example.

Before investing in a hot drinks vending machine it’s worth considering if it will provide the quality and choice of drinks your staff demand. In the U.K. many people start the day with a cup of tea, and almost half of them will drink 2-3 cups of tea per day. Many hot drinks machines, particularly bean to cup coffee machines, do not offer a tea option or serve tea of such poor quality that many tea drinkers won’t even try it.

Although traditional Black Teas are the U.K.’s favourite – almost half of tea drinkers require a choice to satisfy their tastes including green, decaffeinated and  herbal teas. Of course with all teas a hot drinks machine needs to brew them properly to serve a high quality hot drinks staff will enjoy.

The growth of  “coffee shop culture” in the U.K.  has increased the popularity of luxury “speciality drinks” including Cappuccino, Latte and Hot Chocolate. Even though these drinks are typically cost more than standard hot drinks, many office consumers will pay extra for a beverage of similar quality to their favourite from a coffee shop.

When preparing to install a hot drinks machine it is worthwhile researching the  taste preferences of your staff, scheduling a “Tasting Demonstration” to sample the quality of the beverages and ensure the needs of the staff are met and the facility is as cost-effective as possible.

Bean to Cup Coffee Machines; dispelling the myths.

Bean to cup coffee machines

If you speak to any self confessed “coffee connisseur” they will explicate the virtues of bean to cup coffee machines to produce true barista style – coffee shop quality hot drinks. Many businesses will install a bean to cup coffee machine into their offices, believing they enhance the corporate image. However this is a fallacy! Find out the reality of bean to cup coffee.

 1 – “Bean to Cup produces the freshest quality coffee”

Reality –  Coffee beans begin to go stale after just 3 days! Therefore if you fill up your bean hopper on Monday morning and dont drink it all before Wednesday, your coffee will lose it’s freshness and subsequent drinks will taste bitter. Coffee beans themsleves can also vary in quality reducing the consistancy of the taste of coffee produced.

 2 – “Bean to Cup is the only way to get an authentic espresso and coffee shop style specialty drinks.”

Reality – True espresso needs to have water passed through the ground coffee at 9 bar pressure – this is what creates the crema. Most bean to cup coffee machines do not use 9 bar pressure, instead the water is drip fed through the coffee in much the same way a filter coffee machine does.

Most bean to cup machines are only able to use 2 types of beans max. therefore not offering a complete range to cover individual taste preferences. Eventhough they may use fresk milk to make Cappuccinos and other speciality drinks most don’t offer Tea (and if they do it’s usually instant tea which is of very low quality.)

 3 – “Bean to Cup Coffee Machines are a stylish and cost effective addition to our office?”

Bean to cup coffee machines are noisy and can be quite cumbersome due the the amount of moving parts inside, the bean hopper, grinder, brewer etc.  The more moving parts a machine has the more chance there is of something going wrong. The average bean to cup machine breaks down and requires a call out 4 times a year. This unreliability increases the cost of service cover per machine.

The number of service calls has a direct relationship to the overall maintenance of the machine. The moving parts within a bean to cup machine all require a weekly deep clean to remove the build up of coffee grounds and residue, and prevent the contaminantion of the drinks. A leased machine should have the deep clean treatment incorporated into the rental costs as general maintenance. If not this cost is usually recouped through a lack of quality service and subsequent machine failures and service callouts.

Why not check you machine? Run a rinse cycle and the water should come out crystal clear! If not that water is going into your drinks!

Of course there will always be those who wish to have a bean to cup machine dispite the realities and practicalities. However it is now possible to get the range and quality of coffee shop drinks, using freshly ground ingredients, from a single-serve coffee machine designed for commercial environments.

Before investing in a coffee machine for your office, it’s worthwhile to have demonstration and even taste test of a modern single serve machine, find out how they compare to bean to cup.