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Monday, 27th September 2010
In General Japan News,

Japan's vending machine success

There are estimated to be around five million vending machines in Japan designed to meet nearly every need.

AFP reports that the machines are now as standard as traffic lights and offer a staggering array of goods from food to umbrellas and flowers.

Drink vending machines alone generated $27 billion (£13.9 billion) in 2009 and there is approximately one machine for every 50 people in Japan.

Dole Japan even decided to install a machine that vended chilled bananas to commuters travelling through a Tokyo train station.

"You can buy bananas at convenience stores or supermarkets, but people seem to find it fun to buy them from a vending machine," said Dole spokeswoman Hiromi Ohtaki.

A low crime rate in Japan also means that the machines are very rarely targeted by vandals or thieves so they can be installed in a wide variety of locations including busy city centres or even the top of Mount Fuji. recently reported the growing use of technology in Japan's vending machines including special machines that use cameras to identify the sex and age of consumers and recommends appropriate products.

Written by Susan Ballion.