This 1950 model Fruit-o-matic fresh fruit-dispensing machine was touted as “A fully automatic fresh fruit merchandiser”. Made by the Fruit-o-matic Manufacturing Company, this machine dispensed chilled, fresh fruit. A coin was dropped in the slot corresponding with the row of fruit displayed in the window above the slot, and the fruit automatically dropped into the dispensing chute for it to be retrieved.
Features listed for the Fruit-o-matic are:
Hermetically sealed noiseless refrigeration unit
Standard coin mechanism with a slug rejector
Fluorescent light on front panel
Baked enamel finish
And in addition, the Fruit-o-matic incorporated “all the features that make Fruit-o-matic the ideal fresh fruit merchandiser for new fields, diversification and year ‘round profits.” The ad that appears here includes two testimonials regarding the popularity and dependability of these machines. One review is from the Executive Secretary of the YMCA of Hollywood, CA and the other is from the UCLA store manager. The photos here show the Fruit-o-matic being used in schools, at the Y and at bowling alleys. There is also an ad from a vending machine trade publication informing those who will attend a trade show to be on the lookout for the Fruit-o-matic in room 730!
A video of Jane Mansfield using the Fruit-o-matic can be viewed at YouTube:
Fruit-o-matic Manufacturing Company
5225 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
Have you, or anyone you know ever used a Fruit-o-matic? Email us and let us know. We here at Vintage Vending have seen many vending machines over the years, but have never run across one of these.