According to the Huffington Post, ice cream sandwiches are the new cupcake. Luckily, you don’t have to rethink your operation to get in on the trend before it goes the way of the cronut.

Macro trends like nostalgia  and extreme dining have influenced the resurgence of the ice cream sandwich. Customers love treats that remind them of their childhood, and they’re craving indulgent desserts as a reward for eating healthy the rest of the day. Restaurants around the globe are capitalizing on this trend, with recipes as simple as the original or as exotic as the S’mores Burger, made with Nutella spread, brûlée marshmallow, vanilla ice cream and Maldon sea salt on mini brioche.

It’s easier than you think to offer your own twist on this classic treat, especially if you’re one of these types of operations:

For Bakeries or Coffee Shops:
You’re already known for fresh-baked goodies, so delicious ice cream sandwiches are only one step away. Adding a soft serve machine to your back of house will open up infinite flavor combinations that will take your most popular baked items to the next level.

Try any of our recipes (or invent your own) and sandwich cool, creamy soft serve between cookies, brownies, cake slices and more. Cut a cake donut in half, fill the middle with coffee soft serve and add maple bacon crumbles to the center for a sweet and savory breakfast-turned-dessert combo to die for.

For Frozen Yogurt Shops:
The DIY trend continues to dominate in the foodservice space, especially when it comes to ice cream. As competition continues to grow, you need to continue to find new ways to get customers to choose your shop, rather than the store just down the street.

Signature products and experiences could take your shop over the top. Partner with a local bakery to offer the fresh-baked brownies or other options to serve as the “bread” (see above). Invite your customers to create their own ice cream sandwiches in the wackiest flavor combinations available. You could even hold a contest for the most indulgent treat, complete with mix-ins and toppings.

For Recreation Destinations:
Unique food items are part of an amusement park’s DNA. Classics like caramel apples and cotton candy will always draw a crowd, but nothing drives return business better than a concoction that’s only available at your place.

Using either hard-packed ice cream or soft serve, experiment with customer favorites to create an ice cream sandwich that’s unique to your location. Try funnel cake waffles as the vehicle for Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Soft Serve and watch the customers line up!

See? Ice cream sandwiches are practical for any size or type of operation, and the sky’s the limit when it comes to flavor combinations. Your business just got a whole lot cooler.

As you may know, Frostline® Frozen Treats is manufactured and marketed by Kent Precision Foods Group. We want to share an exciting company-wide initiative that furthers our commitment to serving the needs of not only our customers, but our customers’ customers.

At Kent Precision Foods Group, we regularly gather insights from leading foodservice research groups and organizations to stay ahead of flavor, consumer and industry trends. A focus on what’s coming next has helped us evolve our business with more innovative products and processes that benefit everyone who interacts with our company and brands.

That’s why we have formed the KPFG Insights Foodservice Broker Advisory Board. The board includes a regional cross section of industry leaders with extensive experience, drawn from the country’s top brokers, including:

  • Al McGarity – Gilbert Foods
  • Phil Schmidt – Floyd B. Case Inc.
  • Elizabeth Klingman – Acosta
  • Ed Brink – Herspring-Gibbs
  • Kyle Moen – Synergy Enterprises
  • Dori Bilbrey – Menu Marketing

By more directly engaging with the broker community, we hope to gather industry insights, learn more about competition, discover cross-merchandising opportunities, test promotion ideas, identify product gaps, ideate on new products, and collect operator feedback, including overall business insights and trend impact. KPFG will use this information to serve as a source of market intelligence for the entire foodservice industry and to create future product and marketing plans for our brands.

The KPFG Insighters Foodservice Broker Advisory Board meets every six weeks via conference calls and at least twice a year face to face. Input from the first meeting, held in November, is already being incorporated into the KPFG Foodservice plan for 2016.

For more information about the Broker Advisory Board or about KPFG, please visit precisionfoods.com.

When most of us hear the word “chocolate,” we think of candy, cookies, and other mouthwatering sweets. Of course, everyone loves a decadent dessert. But did you know that for 90% of chocolate’s existence, it was neither sweet nor easily accessible? As a modern treat defying that past, Frostline® Chocolate Soft Serve Mix brings you the history of its famed flavor.

The ancient Mesoamericans discovered chocolate, probably around 1900 B.C. If you thought your cup of cocoa was a modern phenomenon, groups like the Olmec, Maya and Aztec had you beat 4,000 years ago. They drank chocolate as a bitter, frothy beverage. It might not sound as good as your classic hot chocolate, but its ingredients, which included chili peppers and other spices, were certainly “original.”

Even in its unsweetened state, ancient chocolate was so popular that its availability was limited to society’s most elite. This begs the question: if the Mesoamericans weren’t in it for the sugar, what was the appeal? Watch out romantics, because history tells us they found chocolate to be a mood enhancer and aphrodisiac. They may have been on to something 3,500 years before Valentine’s Day was even invented.

Due to its…interesting effects, people used to think chocolate had spiritual and mystical powers. They reserved it for rulers, warriors, priests and nobles at sacred ceremonies. In fact, the Spanish explorers who brought chocolate back to Europe only had the privilege of trying the stuff because the Aztec king mistook their leader for an incarnated deity.

Europeans sweetened chocolate with cane sugar and cinnamon in the 1500s, but one thing remained unchanged: it was still only available to the rich and royal. Thank goodness for the invention of the steam engine in the 1700s, which made mass production possible.

Today, the word “chocolate” has expanded to include a range of sweet and accessible treats, like Frostline Chocolate Soft Serve Mix. Unlike ancient chocolate, it’s refreshingly delicious, surprisingly affordable, and even available to customers with dietary restrictions. Frostline Vanilla Soft Serve Mix is also available for customers who prefer the classic cone.

The U.S. Postal Service has announced a new set of ice cream-themed stamps[1] that look good enough to eat. Designed by Ethel Kessler with illustrations by Nancy Stahl, they feature five classic soda fountain treats that are sure to inspire appetites. You’re probably familiar with most of them, but here’s a run down:

Double-Scoop Ice Cream Cone:
You guessed it—this is a classic, cone-shaped pastry stacked with two scoops of ice cream.

Egg Cream:
Oddly enough, this contains neither eggs nor cream. It’s a classic beverage consisting of milk, carbonated water, and chocolate syrup.

Banana Split:
Variations of this classic dessert are a dime a dozen, but it’s traditionally made with a split banana, ice cream, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, nuts, and cherries.

Root Beer Float:
A simple but stand-alone treat consisting of ice cream in root beer.

Hot Fudge Sundae:
Again, variations of this treat are endless, but it’s typically made with vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, nuts, sprinkles, and a cherry on top.

Why the emphasis on soda fountain treats? According to USPS, soda fountains were important gathering places in U.S. history, especially when Prohibition banned alcohol sales[2]. During World War II, soda fountains popped up at military bases in the U.S. and abroad, because drinking a soda or indulging in a sundae reminded soldiers of simple pleasures at home[3]. Today soda fountain culture lives on in homes, restaurants, and frozen treat operations.

Did you know Frostline® can help create the classic favorites featured on USPS’s new stamps? Ones you can actually eat? We offer soft serve mixes, frozen yogurt mixes, and frozen beverage mixes that can be substituted for traditional, hard-scoop ice cream. Because Frostline is economical to ship, convenient to store and easy to prep, you can offer a fresher product and make more money. Plus, many of our products are free of lactose, cholesterol, gluten, and dairy, so you can bring back childhood treats with a better for you twist.

 

[1] https://about.usps.com/news/national-releases/2015/pr15_069.htm

[2] http://www.dairyfoods.com/articles/91535-heres-one-stamp-you-wont-mind-licking

[3] http://flicksandfood.com/postal-service-to-issue-weight-control-stamps-in-2016/

If you own or operate a restaurant, you may have noticed that your customers’ orders seem erratic. It may seem like diners are undecided or confused about what they want to eat or drink.

But according to Mintel’s 2016 Foodservice Trends report, that’s not the case. In a world full of never-ending choices, consumers are balancing their diets (and lives) by ordering extremes. To keep up, today’s food and beverage outlets have to cater to both ends of the dining spectrum – and Frostline can help.

Splurge and Steal
Most customers are finding reasons to dine across the entire price continuum. Busy professionals might grab fast food for lunch on a busy day, only to meet friends at a premium dining hot spot for an indulgent (and expensive) dinner.

To balance the higher-priced items on your menu, consider offering an incredibly low-cost dessert. Frostline Soft Serve Mix is so affordable that you can even offer it as a complimentary treat to customers.

Perfectly Prepared and DIY
The level of choice customers want to make changes daily…even hourly. Overwhelmed by the options for customization, a customer may order a signature menu item exactly how you recommend it. They trust your chef to provide a delicious and well-balanced dish.

But if you make it easy, the same customer will be delighted by the opportunity to DIY their dessert. With a soft serve machine and Frostline Soft Serve mix, you can offer endless customizable frozen treats – from a sundae bar with delicious toppings to a build-your-own milkshake station.

Health and Indulgence
While Millennials continue to clamor for healthier foods, they are most likely to choose foods based on their mood. If they feel like eating something indulgent, they’re going to go for it, even if they make healthy choices most of the time.

Luckily for Millennials and all the others they influence, Frostline offers the best of both worlds. Both vanilla and chocolate flavors are lactose-free, gluten-free and low-fat, but they taste so rich and indulgent that customers can’t get enough.

In 2016, foodservice is all about helping customers make easy choices to find balance. To do so, operators must embrace the “and” – even when it seems incongruous. With the help of Frostline® Soft Serve, you can make this extreme dining trend work for you.

With the start of 2016, you may be wondering what dessert trends will emerge this year. One category gaining traction is unexpected pairings, like exotic or even spicy flavors in sweet desserts[1].

“Operators are going to put a bit more thought into how they are incorporating chilies, cayenne and roasted garlic into unconventional ways of baking,” said Corporate Chef for Dawn Food Products, Kami R. Smith. She noted that cookies, brownies and mousse are great menu items for chocolate and spice[2].

Unexpected flavors are also finding their way into ice cream and soft serve. Sweet and salty, heat paired with sweet, and exotic flavor combinations are just a few of the trends showing up in freezers and soft serve machines. Olive oil and sea salt were big in 2015, but another savory ingredient that may emerge on the scene in 2016 is ground black pepper[3].

As we shake off winter, it’s easy to heat up your offerings with unusual creations that will keep customers guessing. With dozens of recipes and flavor combination ideas, Frostline® makes it easy to spice up your soft serve.

 

 

[1] http://nrn.com/sweet-solutions/sweet-spicy-savory-horizon-2016-desserts

[2] http://nrn.com/sweet-solutions/sweet-spicy-savory-horizon-2016-desserts

[3] https://www.specialtyfood.com/news/article/ground-black-pepper-may-be-next-trendy-ice-cream-flavor/

February 6 is National Frozen Yogurt Day[1]. Let’s dig in spoon first and celebrate this ice-cold treat!

Frozen yogurt is eaten almost as much as ice cream nowadays[2], and it’s easy to see why. Served in an infinite number of flavors and styles, it’s a delicious, healthier alternative to ice cream.[3] But it wasn’t always seen so favorably. The health-conscious trend of the 1970s spurred the creation of frozen yogurt. It didn’t go over very well because many people did not like the taste. It finally gained widespread popularity in the 1980s, after recipes improved to create the frozen yogurt we know and love.[4]

Dying to know more? Here are 5 things you might not know about frozen yogurt:

  1. Plain flavored yogurt has been around for more than 4,000 years; however, it wasn’t until the 1970s that anyone thought to freeze it.[5]
  1. The key to frozen yogurt’s popularity is sugar. In the 80s, frozen yogurt franchises added sugar to balance the tart flavor, and it was a hit. By the 90s, frozen yogurt had a 10% share of the frozen dessert market.[6]
  1. FroYo has become a very trendy treat, and unique flavor creations are constantly in the works. In 2015 the world’s first black frozen yogurt was released in a flavor called Black Sakura. The color is due to the addition of naturally activated charcoal, which is said to contain healthy antioxidants and can also help remove toxins from the body.[7]
  1. As if you needed further convincing to enjoy this treat, frozen yogurt also contains protein, calcium, vitamins and potassium. These healthy qualities among others can help boost a person’s immune system, lower cholesterol, and aid the digestive system.[8]
  1. Like traditional ice cream, frozen yogurt is now available in many different forms. In addition to traditional soft-serve styles, you can also find parlors that feature options like hand-scooped froyo, smoothies that blend froyo with fresh fruit and juice, as well as frozen yogurt filled cakes and pies.[9]

While frozen yogurt may have taken a while to gain traction, it can now be found in just about every style and flavor imaginable. Now go out and share your newfound frozen yogurt knowledge as you celebrate this sweet holiday.

If you’re looking for a delicious, fat-free frozen yogurt for your operation, Frostline® offers mixes in vanilla and chocolate. Contact us for more information or to place an order.

 

[1] http://www.punchbowl.com/holidays/national-frozen-yogurt-day

[2] http://www.punchbowl.com/holidays/national-frozen-yogurt-day

[3] http://www.punchbowl.com/holidays/national-frozen-yogurt-day

[4] http://www.spacemanusa.com/more-fun-facts-about-frozen-yogurt/

[5] http://www.spacemanusa.com/more-fun-facts-about-frozen-yogurt/

[6] http://thefuzzypeach.com/self-serve-frozen-yogurt-franchise-history

[7] http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/news/black-new-white-2016/

[8] http://www.spacemanusa.com/more-fun-facts-about-frozen-yogurt/

[9] https://www.franchisehelp.com/industry-reports/frozen-yogurt-industry-report/

 

Consumer demand for breakfast all day is at an all-time high.

McDonald’s started the era of all-day breakfast in October, after receiving tens of thousands of demands for all-day breakfast on social media[1]. Three months later McDonald’s still says all-day breakfast is the number one request they get from customers, so it’s not going away anytime soon[2].

Other brands are showing signs of innovation in their breakfast offerings too, like Taco Bell’s Waffle Taco or Sonic’s French Toaster. Whether or not businesses see a complete overhaul of their breakfast daypart in the future, many are finding a way to capitalize on some aspect of the trend.

According to the National Restaurant Association’s (NRA) 2015 Restaurant Industry Forecast, seven out of ten consumers say they want restaurants to serve breakfast throughout the day. Millennials are more interested in breakfast for dinner than any other age group before them[3].

Have you thought about bringing breakfast flavors to your shop? You can transform Frostline® vanilla and chocolate soft serve into trendy new breakfast creations with one or two on-hand ingredients. Offer maple bacon syrup soft serve, coffee flavors, or waffle cones to take advantage of the fad, and turn your operation into a delicious dessert destination.

For breakfast inspired recipes and more, check out our recipe sheet!

 

[1] http://time.com/money/4062667/mcdonalds-all-day-breakfast/

[2] http://www.eater.com/2015/10/16/9553041/mcdonalds-all-day-breakfast-disaster-franchisees-upset

[3] https://www.qsrmagazine.com/exclusives/dawn-daylong-breakfast

The world of frozen treats can be a daunting place. With so many options, you could get a brain freeze trying to make sense of it all. Ice cream, gelato, custard, sherbet, sorbet, frozen yogurt, soft serve, the list goes on. So what’s the best option for your customers? And what are the differences anyway?

If you’re looking to open an ice cream or frozen yogurt shop, or want to add frozen treats to your restaurant, amusement park or convenience store, this quick reference guide is the key to your frozen treat education.

Ice Cream:
Like the name suggests, ice cream is a frozen product made from cream. Milk is often added to the mixture, as well as other flavorings and sweeteners. Ice cream contains at least 10 percent milk fat[1].

Gelato:
While gelato and ice cream generally contain the same ingredients, authentic gelato uses more milk and less cream than ice cream, reducing its milk fat content. Gelato is also churned very slowly, making it much denser than regular ice cream. Another factor that makes it taste creamier is the fact that it is served at warmer temperatures[2].

Custard:
The key ingredient to this delicious dish is egg yolk. All other ingredients are the same as regular ice cream, but the yolk creates a thicker product. It also contains a minimum of 10% milk fat, as well as at least 1.4% egg yolk solids[3].

Sherbet:
Unlike ice cream, which is based on cream, sherbet is based on fruit puree. It contains a maximum of 2% milk fat[4].

Sorbet:
This frozen dessert is also made from fruit purée, but it contains no dairy ingredients[5].

Frozen Yogurt:
In contrast to ice cream, frozen yogurt is made with cultured milk (yogurt) instead of cream. The freezing process does not kill any significant amount of the yogurt’s cultures. When frozen, the cultures go into a dormant state, but when returned to a warm temperature within the body, they become active again. There are three types of yogurt: regular, lowfat and nonfat. Regular yogurt is made from whole milk and contains at least 3.25% milk fat. Lowfat yogurt is made from lowfat milk or part skim milk and has between 2 and 0.5% milk fat. Nonfat yogurt is made from skim milk and contains less than 0.5% milk fat[6].

Soft Serve:
This sounds super obvious, but only because it is. Soft serve is a frozen treat that’s…well, soft. It can contain the same ingredients as any of the treats listed above, but comes from a machine that results in a smoother texture. The machine incorporates more air and doesn’t allow the mixture to harden as much[7].

There are pros and cons to each of these frozen treats. For example, while ice cream may be the most well-known frozen treat in the U.S., its often ruled out by health-conscious customers due to its fat content. And while gelato and custard are known for their richness and density, they’re off limits to customers who are vegan or lactose-intolerant. From among the many options, you have to decide which frozen treat is best for your operation.

If profitability, waste reduction and lower labor costs are important to you, consider Frostline® Soft Serve. Although low in fat, Frostline Soft Serve provides the same creamy texture and delicious taste as traditional dairy soft serve.

Because it’s shelf-stable, Frostline Soft Serve doesn’t tie up valuable space in the cooler or freezer. Compared to made-from-scratch and liquid soft serve, it also costs less to buy, ship and serve—helping you make more money.

Speaking of popular with patrons, customers will be happy to know that Frostline Soft Serve is Kosher and free of gluten, lactose, cholesterol, and trans fat. There’s something for everyone with this delicious treat, even the most dessert deprived.

 

[1] http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=135.110

[2] http://culinaryarts.about.com/od/glossary/g/Gelato.htm

[3] http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=135.110

[4] http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=135.140

[5] http://culinaryarts.about.com/od/glossary/g/Sorbet.htm

[6] http://aboutyogurt.com/index.asp?bid=27

[7] http://www.thefreedictionary.com/soft+serve

 

Ice cream and custard sales are taking a hit due to egg shortages and higher prices.

The egg shortage is the result of the avian flu epidemic that has devastated flocks of egg-laying chickens across the country. Since December 2014, more than 48 million birds, mostly chickens and turkeys, have been impacted. Thus, many operators are reconsidering their homemade ice cream or custard strategies, pulling these egg-dependent treats off the menu or raising prices until the supply returns to normal.

Because of the egg crisis, the U.S. Department of Agriculture lowered its forecast for egg production this year to 6.9 billion dozen, a 5.3 percent drop from 2014. By late May, the price for a dozen Midwest large eggs had already soared to $2.62, a 120 percent increase from their mid-April, pre-bird flu prices, industry analyst group Urner Barry said.

Rita’s Italian Ice is in the process of phasing out frozen custard due to the shortage.

“We are not able to get our egg supplies anymore to supply our 600 stores,” said spokeswoman Ariel Vegotsky.

Rita’s customers will now find soft-serve ice cream in exchange for custard.

Officials say it could take up to two years for eggs to return to normal production. “The best-case scenario, we’re talking about a year before the availability is more robust,” said John Howeth, the American Egg Board’s senior vice president in charge of food service and egg product marketing.

If the egg shortage is affecting your revenue, it may be time to give Frostline® Soft Serve a shot. Since our dry mixes don’t require eggs, you no longer have to worry about the uncertain price of produce. Plus, Frostline Soft Serve is low fat and free of lactose, gluten, and trans fat. Fast and easy prep means you get fresh product when you want it, and with taste that’s consistently rich and creamy, your customers will never guess our soft serve is actually better for them.

“So far, the reaction from guests has been positive,” said Vegotsky. “Everyone is happy with the product we are serving.”

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