Few phrases generated more excitement in 2016 than “Pizza ATM.” When the US’s first version of the pizza-vending technology landed at Xavier University back in August, the idea of being served a hot pizza out of a thin slot at the touch of a button was apparently too much for Americans to handle. According to Jennifer Paiotti, XU’s marketing director of auxiliary services, the machine was covered by over 3,000 media outlets and the ATM dished out 750 pizzas in its first week – a rate of a pizza about every 13 minutes, an amazing feat being that each pizza takes three minutes to cook. Now, that fervor is about to spread across the nation.
Paline, the French company behind these Pizza ATMs, says it’s received interest in its product from colleges and businesses in 20 states and Canada, and the machine could start shipping to new locations as soon as this month. “We purposely pushed back (distribution) for everybody,” Pizza ATM product representative Alec Verlin told Cincinnati’s WCPO. “We were not prepared for that volume of inquiries.” Verlin wouldn’t disclose which states would be blessed with Pizza ATMs first, but he did believe we’ll be seeing them all across the country by the end of the year.
As a refresher for those who failed to embrace Pizza ATM technology last year, what makes these machines especially intriguing is that they claim to offer higher quality pizza by utilizing a fresh dough that is allowed to rise for two days before being kneaded, partially cooked, topped by hand and stuffed into the ATM. From there, each pizza is finalized by a convection oven upon demand. Paline is so serious about quality control that interested Pizza ATM parties even have to complete a training course in Cincinnati before their Pizza ATM goes operational.
Of course, what Paline has yet to address is my skepticism that Pizza ATMs are, in fact, really ATMs. Can I check my pizza balance?? Can I make pizza transfers??? What about pizza deposits?? Yeah, I didn’t think so!