VANCOUVER, BC, March 9, 2021—Today, UpMeals, the leading white-label, prepared-meal solution, launched its first SmartVending machine at a residential property– Devonshire Properties’ Larch Tower (Beach Towers) location in Vancouver, B.C. The newly installed machine will give the 1,000+ residents access to custom curated healthy meals available in the lobby of the building, 24/7. Residents will be able to grab healthy options on their way to work in the morning, have a freshly prepared entrée in the evening and have access to healthy treats and snacks throughout the day. The SmartVending machine will also hold 25 percent of items that are daily necessities, such as laundry cards, detergent, and toothpaste.
The SmartVending hardware is a refrigerated machine installed in the Larch Tower lobby, located at 1600 Beach Avenue, with an interface customized to reflect Devonshire’s branding. The healthy meals are delivered to the machine at a regular cadence to ensure ultimate freshness. Devonshire Properties will have the ability to monitor their SmartVending machine remotely, create plans for meals nearing their expiry date and build menus based on the popularity of food items.
To curate the menu, residents of the Beach Tower property participated in a survey provided by UpMeals identifying the goals and benefits they want to achieve with the meals and snacks available to them.
The survey included their dietary and cuisine preferences, and eating habits, which helped inform their customized menu offering of healthy, fresh, and sustainable meals, including items like the Devonshire Signature Breakfast Wrap, Baja Chicken Salad Bowl, Fall Harvest Bowl, and Seed Nut Superfood Bar. Any meals that are not sold within their freshness time frame will be donated to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.
“Many residential rental buildings in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland are looking for ways to ensure tenants are looked after, happy, and healthy, especially as we continue to navigate the pandemic,” said Drew Munro, Co-Founder and CEO of UpMeals. “Devonshire Properties has seized an opportunity to disrupt the rental market by offering this value-add to their tenants. Working on this install has been a collaborative process with the tenants. We saw surprising results from our survey with them that aligned with healthier eating habits, higher energy levels, and increased protein intake. We’re excited to provide them with a menu that helps meet these goals in their day-to-day lives.”
“When we heard about the UpMeals SmartVending machine, we saw huge potential benefit for our tenants and residents,” said Cody Neal, Vice President of Devonshire Properties. “Not only does it give them access to convenient, affordable food options which they’ve helped create, it is well-timed while many pivot to working from home. Onsite access to safe and healthy fresh food options really seems to have residents excited.”
The SmartVending solution is the first of its kind to be offered as an amenity in a residential building. Devonshire Properties foresees the value add to help encourage long standing tenants, as a selling feature for prospective renters, and to help drive competitiveness in the market. Devonshire has plans to customize and install SmartVending machines in other properties throughout the Lower Mainland.
UpMeals is a food accessibility solution on a mission to make healthy, nutritious meals available 24/7 via SmartVending machines or grab ‘n go retail bars. They provide custom, healthy, sustainably packaged meals that meet the highest food safety standards. Each meal is professionally white-labeled to create beautifully branded meals and SmartVending interfaces. A custom app provides data and feedback on sales and food availability so the business can make informed decisions and reduce waste.
Devonshire Properties is a family business and a dedicated owner/operator/developer of multi-family housing. With properties located in major metropolitan centres across the country, the company focuses on quality and community so residents can enjoy and be proud of their home. Caring for residents and employees alike, Devonshire has used a people-first philosophy since its beginning, over 60 years ago.
Giving back is another cornerstone of the business and a value that has been passed from generation to generation of the ownership group. Philanthropic efforts are organized by the company’s President and they’re concentrated in the areas of poverty reduction, education, and mental health.