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We Now Exist in the Same World as Steak Vending Machines

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One man is taking vending machines—long the domain of Coke products, Chex Mix, and candy bars—and reinventing them for the meat market. Joshua Applestone, founder of Applestone Meat Co., has already set up a couple of meat vending machines in upstate New York, and is opening more. In 2019, he hopes to make the leap to Manhattan, Bloomberg reports. The era of 24/7 meat is almost upon us.

The existing vending machines are stocked with beef, pork, lamb, and sausage. The meat is refrigerated, but not frozen. Applestone Meat Co. compares its meat machines to a butcher case like you might find at the supermarket. Raw meat never sits for more than a week, and processed goods (like hotdogs) are removed after two weeks, its website reads. The meat is sourced from a family farm in Pine Plains, New York, where it is “humanely and sustainably raised.”

Applestone himself advocates for whole-animal butchery, which means as much of the animal as possible is used, nose to tail, cutting down on wasted meat. And with the meat machines, he hopes to make fresh, high-quality meat accessible to more people (including those who might not have a favorite butcher shop nearby).

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“We’re not in the 1950s anymore, where everyone works 9 to 5 and eats at the same time every night,” he said. “Life is chaotic. At best.”

This is immensely helpful to all those folks with hunks of ground chuck frozen in their freezers, but no foresight to start thawing it before they head to work in the morning. It’s also great for anyone susceptible to Meat Hunger in the pre-dawn hours of a Sunday morning. Feast at your leisure, carnivores.

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