The European Vending Association (EVA) has published a position paper and set of contactless technical specifications in an effort to break down the barriers to the use of cash-free payments in vending machines.
The EVA, made up of 18 national vending associations and 58 companies, is hoping to follow the lead of US counterpart, NAMA, and encourage the introduction of contactless payments at machines.
The position paper is aimed at credit card companies and banks and hopes to "break the deadlock" with financial institutions on transaction costs, a major barrier to the introduction of the technology.
EVA says that at current transaction costs, cashless payments will only have limited application in vending.
The group has also highlighted the importance of speed and ease of use, claiming any transaction that takes longer than four seconds is off-putting for customers.
The Association has published the latest version of its cashless vending specification, establishing technical guidelines for manufacturers and operators on the design and implementation of cashless payment devices.
EVA says contactless schemes that use cards and mobile phones are ideal for the vending market because earlier technologies such as chip and pin may require a receipt printer and a secure keypad, which inflates the hardware costs to an unacceptable level.
However, EVA has also highlighted areas it says need bank cooperation. The association says that the vending industry requires a simple generic process for bank certification of contactless payment devices in machines, insisting the operator cannot be made responsible for the technical integration of systems.
In addition, the banking industry's preference to have all machines fitted with online capability could prove a significant barrier to the full adoption of contactless systems, says EVA.