Source: Cascade Glacier
Heading to Expo East this week? I am. Typically the smaller—and much more manageable—of the two Natural Products Expos in the U.S., this one will be unlike any other, as entrepreneurs are anxious to show off their innovations. Last year’s in-person Expo East, as well in-person Expo West 2020 and 2021, were all cancelled because of the pandemic. Without a doubt, plant-based and keto are sure to be dominant themes, but so will regenerative agriculture and sustainability. I expect to hear lots of “stories” and brands banking on buyers to listen and respond with a purchase order.
Folks, less than five years ago--with high-protein ice cream—you learned that just because a concept is doing well in the freezer does not mean every brand needs to play in this space. When it comes to dairy-free ice cream, there are some very good chocolates and vanillas in the retail marketplace. That’s enough!
It’s not the same story in foodservice. Eugene, Oregon-based Cascade Glacier recognized this opportunity and is making it easier for foodservice operators to offer plant-based and allergen-friendly options that will satisfy a variety of ice cream consumers. Available in both Classic Chocolate and Vanilla, Cascade Glacier Dairy Free comes in three-gallon tubs for foodservice. The neutral base is intentionally crafted to blend seamlessly with the decadent flavors, eliminating any aftertaste such as coconut or almond that is common in other non-dairy alternatives. This formulation makes the product more versatile, allowing retailers to serve dairy-free versions of everything from scoops and sundaes to smoothies and milkshakes.
My friends at McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams are also embracing the concept of a very neutral base in its new Dairy-Free Frozen Desserts. Like all the company’s offerings, the new line is made from scratch at McConnell’s Family Dairy, using a proprietary and innovative base of oat milk, cocoa butter and coconut oil to approximate the indulgent, unique and creamy mouthfeel of McConnell’s ice creams without the coconut, oat or nutty aftertaste or smell customers so often find in dairy-free offerings. And like McConnell’s other products, there are no artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners.