Iceland Foods is to trial the use of smart vending machines to sell frozen ready meals in gyms.
The vending machines, which are manufactured by Mother, will stock 10 varieties of frozen Myprotein meals, priced between £5 and £5.50 depending on portion size.
The trial launched in a single Fitness First gym in Wigan today (24 May), but will be rolled out to more sites nationwide if the trial is deemed to be successful, the supermarket said.
Lines include a low calorie Pulled Pork Mac & Cheese (350g, rsp £5), Katsu Chicken and Chicken Tikka curries (both 350g, rsp £5) as well as Singapore Noodles (550g, rsp £5.50).
The new trial would give gym goers “ultimate convenience” by being able to collect a meal post workout, to be cooked when they get home, the supermarket said.
“Iceland is proud to expand its existing brand partnership with Myprotein, and work together with Fitness First, to bring people quick, easy and nutritious protein-packed meals that support them in living a healthy lifestyle,” said Andrew Staniland, group buying director at Iceland Foods & The Food Warehouse.
“When we came up with the idea, we just knew we had to trial it. We can’t wait to see the machines rolled out across many more Fitness First locations very soon,” Staniland said.
Iceland has held an exclusive licensing agreement with Myprotein owner THG to stock the high protein brand since October 2022.
Under the five-year partnership the supermarket lists the brand’s desserts and ready meals across its 1,000 Iceland and Food Warehouse stores. The two have also been developing a new exclusive Myprotein range.
Myprotein entered Iceland stores in January and the supermarket has been on a marketing blitz of late, including a competition held at its Tottenham Food Warehouse store last week. The chain promised to give a year’s supply of Myprotein ready meals to the first customer who could lift the lid of “the world’s heaviest” blue fridge.
“It’s a testament to the smart vending machine category that brands like Myprotein are now actively using vending to help reach new customers and build their brand awareness,” said Mother, CEO and founder Phil Davison. He added that a Myprotein smart vending machine is a “perfect fit” for gyms.
“The interactive user interface, cashless and mobile payments, product filtering, nutritional information, product animations and special offers all contribute to what customers are demanding nowadays – a modern day digital retail experience, he said.
Iceland has been working to improve its convenience offering of late. In April The Grocer exclusively revealed that the supermarket had launched a new Iceland Local convenience format on a petrol forecourt in Wolverhampton.