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Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream Essay

2362 words - 9 pages

BEN & JERRY'S ICE CREAMBen and Jerry's Ice Cream was founded by Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield two New Yorkers who had known each other since 7th Grade in Merrick, Long Island, New York, in 1963. In 1977 they moved to Vermont and completed a correspondence course Agriculture 5150 on making ice cream at Pennsylvania State University. Next year, they took their life savings and borrowed $4,000 to complete the $12,000 needed to set up an ice cream making facility in an old abandoned gasoline station. They used a distinctive production method they had learned from Steve Herrell, and the finest fresh Vermont cream and milk. They vowed to share the rewards of the enterprise with their employees and the community. They opened on May 5, 1978, and held a free summer movie festival, projecting movies on the wall of the old gas station that had become their plant. The following year, to celebrate their first anniversary, they offered free ice cream, and it began a yearly tradition.In 1980, they rented space to expand their business and started to distribute their ice cream in pints, mostly to small stores along the delivery routes used by the ice cream wagon. The next year they expanded their packaging plan, and opened their first franchise on highway Route 7, in Shelburne, Vermont. In 1982, they moved their manufacturing facility to a better building. In 1983, Ben & Jerry has opened their first out of state franchise in Portland, Maine, and began selling their ice cream to independent distributors in Boston, Mass.The following year 1984, was a breakthrough for Ben and Jerry's. Sales exceeded $4 million, and 120 percent increase over the previous year. The company went public in Vermont to raise funds for a new manufacturing plant. Haagen-Dazs Ice Cream, then belonging to Pillsbury, tried to limit the distribution of Ben and Jerry's in Boston, prompting a law suit, and publicity campaign against that company.In 1985, Ben and Jerry's established a charitable foundation, using 7.5 percent of the company's pretax profits, as that year sales exceeded $9 million, an143 percent increase over the previous year. A key to the growing popularity seems to be offering unusual flavors, such as cookies and cream or super fudge chunk.The next year Ben and Jerry started a national tour with the "Cowmobile," a unique cross country marketing drive, that seemed to be succeeding despite the loss of the vehicle in a fire near Cleveland. Sales had reached the $20 million dollar mark. The company continued to try out new flavored named for celebrities or suggested by customers, and a new "Cowmobile," completed a national tour. The company pioneered disposing of its waste at a pig farm.In 1988, the company received a Corporate Giving Award, campaigns to redistribute one percent of defense spending to peace-promoting projects, and expanded into Canada, with a shop in Montreal, Quebec, one more than 80 such stores already established in the United States. (Ben & Jerry's...

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