, a former food-biz executive (Coca-Cola, General Mills, Cadbury-Schweppes), has posted an op-ed piece on the website of The Atlantic
) in with an intriguing argument against banning vending machines in schools
The recently passed Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act offers some positive steps to improve how our children eat in schools. But in trying to make schools nutritional oases, public health officials have unwittingly unleashed the black market genie ready and able to fill the void left by departing sodas and snacks. Now, budding student entrepreneurs are rushing in to meet the demand for snacks and beverages that are no longer available legitimately.
Cardello then rattles off several examples of such black markets, including -- I kid you not -- "an eighth-grade student body vice president in Connecticut ... forced to resign after buying Skittles from an underground 'dealer.'"
Cardello provides five examples in total. While does meet the "three's a trend" rule of journalism with two examples to spare, I can't shake the sense that this is one of those pseudo-trends that Jake Shafer of Slate
does such a great job eviscerating.
However, if this trend truly is sweeping schools nationwide, then I have
a message to all the kids who are spending their parents' hard-earned
money on black market junk food:The Gut Check Vending Machine is open
That's right, kids. Not only do we have all the
sweet, sweet candy and sugary, sugary soda that you want, we will beat
ANY price your junk-food dealer quotes
But wait! There's more!
For a limited time, while supplies last, first-time customers will receive a free bag of Funyuns with every order because Funyuns are terrible and we don't want them around us
Interested? Email your order to firstname.lastname@example.org
. One of our trained Junk Food Price Evaluators will get back to you promptly. Please note that at this time, we can accept only unmarked, small-denomination bills or your unwanted gold jewelry
* - No, but really: Funyuns suck.