Keurig introduces touch-free coffee brewing features even as Europe implements new regulations for vending machines

US – Keurig Commercial, the out-of-home coffee division of Keurig Dr Pepper, has introduced touch-free brewing features to its range of bean-to-cup coffee machines for workplaces.

Developed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Keurig Remote Brew app reportedly allows users to select and customise beverages from Keurig coffee machines using a smartphone, without touching the machines physically.

To enable use of the Remote Brew App, Keurig Commercial customers can install a Bluetooth kit on their Eccellenza Touch and Eccellenza Momentum bean-to-cup brewers.

Once the Bluetooth kit is installed, a QR code allows consumers to interact directly with the machines using the Remote Brew app.

 “Coffee is a valued workplace amenity, and businesses are facing new challenges as they bring their employees back to the office and re-open breakrooms,” Phil Drapeau, senior vice-president, away-from-home for Keurig Dr Pepper said.

He added: “While a lot has changed, we’re committed to providing our office customers the comfort and normalcy of great coffee with safe and hygienic brewing solutions.”

Keurig’s first touchless brewing innovation complements the Company’s existing Safe Brewing Toolkit, designed to support safe and hygienic coffee stations in the workplace.

The Safe Brewing Kit includes floor decals for social distancing, brewer signage to support cleaning schedules and coffee maker deep cleaning kits.

The company says it will be unveiling additional brewing innovations during the year to meet the evolving needs of workplaces and offices.

New energy regulations for vending machines

Meanwhile in the Europe, the European Vending and Coffee Service Association (EVA) has said that the introduction of new Ecodesign & Energy Labelling Regulations in the EU and UK as of 1 March 2021 will bring ‘significant changes’ to the vending industry.

According to EVA, the new energy consumption regulations will see the least efficient refrigerated vending machines banned from being sold in the EU and UK, while all new chilled machines will need to display an official energy label when sold.

As a result of the new regulations, refrigerated vending machines will have an official energy rating and be required to display this for customers/operators, while corresponding energy performance targets will progressively ban inefficient machines.

According to a statement from the EVA, the new official energy label (based on an A-G rating) will not permit any refrigerated vending machine to be better than a Class C at its introduction, and has been designed so that most machines ‘cannot be a Class A until at least ten years from now.’

 Due to the inherent design differences between different vending machines, EVA projects that drum/carousel machines are not expected to achieve better than the lowest rating of Class G, while closed front can and bottle machines could for instance be rated D upon the label introduction.

This will have huge consequences for procurement with many governmental and institutional buying guides currently requiring machines rated Class B or better, according to EVA.

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