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Medical Campus eyes healthy vending machines

Yogurt parfaits, fresh juices, salads, grab-and-go dinner options and healthy snacks.

All of the above and more are likely to pop up in a "healthy" vending machine in coming months inside the Thomas R. Beecher Innovation Center on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. If the idea takes off, the organization that runs the campus hopes many more will follow across the 120-acre neighborhood.

Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus Inc. is giving that consideration as it tries to get the first one going within the center at 640 Ellicott St., which tenants have access to seven days a week.

"It's not your traditional vending machine. It's pretty unique," said Jonathan McNeice, director of healthy communities for BNMC. "A  real healthy vending machine would help round out selection for breakfast and dinner grab-and-go options for building tenants. We're kind of figuring out the best business model. BNMC would need to buy the equipment."

McNeice said he hopes to see the idea take off campus-wide, once it's firmed up for the center. "It allows you to put fresh, perishable stuff into a vending machine," he said. "The technology is really there now."

Reporter Karen Robinson covers the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. Follow her on twitter at @krobinsonBN or reach her by email at krobinson@buffnews.com.

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