The family-owned Yorkshire Dales Ice Cream company, best known for its stands at the region’s county shows, has been overwhelmed with orders since readying to sell stock.
So much so that it has now reopened its factories, making enough ice cream in a single day to potentially sell 25,000 scoops.
“Originally, it was just to see what might happen,” said Ellie Coultherd, 25, the partner of family member Scott Rogers.
“We were worried we would lose the summer, that the ice cream we had would go to waste.”
Miss Coultherd, furloughed from her own job, offered to try and sell some of the trays, which hold 25 scoops each.
Mr Rogers, whose family also owns neighbouring Billy Bob’s Parlour, had agreed so long as she sold four lots.
Within 10 minutes of being advertised on social media, all four were gone. A month on, so have 1,000 more trays – so many that the company has had to create a daily delivery rota to ensure it can reach towns and villages across the region.
“It was suddenly so much bigger than we thought it could be,” Miss Coultherd said. “It’s been so popular we’ve been running out of flavours.
“The comments people have sent back to us have just been so nice. It is such a treat. One boy made his own ice cream stall out of cardboard to give them to neighbours.”
Supporting local businesses
Always popular are the farmhouse vanilla, double chocolate, raspberry ripple with shortbread pieces, cinder toffee and apple crumble. But even the more unusual flavours such as liquorice and blackcurrant, which usually sells a single batch per year, have sold out.
The traditional dairy, with ice cream made on the Bolton Abbey farm, uses milk from cows a mile down the road, cream from Grassington, and biscuits and brownies from Keighley’s Grandma Wild’s.
It has made a huge difference, says Mr Rogers, to pass on those benefits to local suppliers. And when it came to making deliveries, he has been driving the ice cream van himself, determined to keep strict social distancing in place.
“We were nervous about going back out trading,” Mr Rogers said. “We didn’t want to just be casually driving around.
“When people saw our van, they would come running out to try and buy some – but we were delivering in bulk, not street to street with the ice cream tunes on. Normally our customers come to us, at places like Bolton Abbey and Fewston Reservoir.
“It’s been pretty good fun to go to them.”
Bulk buy trays
The company’s bulk deliveries, with each tray usually sold at wholesale and containing 4.5l of ice cream, have proved so popular that it has had to set up a village rota to meet demand.
Miss Coultherd said: “Many people haven’t been out of their homes, they may not be able to treat themselves. Who would normally have 4.5l of ice cream at home?
“I think people just want something to look forward to. It’s crazy, but really nice.”
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