Baguette vending machine brings in the dough for French bakers
Thursday, May 22, 2014 - 01:26
May 22 - A French inventor's prize-winning baguette vending machine offers hungry customers their beloved hot loaves at any hour of the day or night. Tara Cleary reports.
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Yvan Hocquel owns a bakery in the French town of Savigny Sur Orge.
And business is booming, thanks partly to a 24-hour baguette dispensing machine called "Pani Vending".
The inventor is baker Jean-Louis Hecht who says he created the machine so that customers wouldn't disturb him at all hours.
Hecht says "Pani Vending" makes life easier for the baker and the sales staff.
SOUNDBITE: Jean-Louis Hecht, baker and inventor of "The Pani" vending machine, saying (French):
"The bread for the Pani vending machine is removed from the oven ten minutes before the end of baking. The baker will then have a pre-cooked product, and then the machine will finish the cooking, distribution and the sale."
And it's quick and easy for customers: they insert a euro, the machine finishes baking the pre-cooked loaf and voila! A hot baguette appears.
SOUNDBITE: Trix Ninot, customer, saying (English):
"The bread is very, very good so when the bakery is closed, sometimes we get bread from the machine."
SOUNDBITE: Salam Azouni, customer, saying (French):
"We park, we put in a coin, we take the baguette, it's hot, it has the same taste, it's the same thing."
And even though Hocquel says the machine creates more work for him, it also makes him more money.
SOUNDBITE: Yvan Hocquel, baker in Savigny Sur Orge, saying (French):
"With the machine, if I continue like this -- we make 8,500 baguettes a month - that's a turnover of 100,000 euros per month."
With 20 machines installed in France and four in Russia, Hecht hopes that "Pani Vending's" popularity is on the rise.
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