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COPPERAS COVE

Ice cream parlor to start own ice cream line amid Blue Bell recall

COPPERAS COVE, TX (KXXV) -  A local ice cream parlor that used to only carry Blue Bell ice cream may not carry it anymore when the products return back to the stores.

Waffle Cone in Copperas Cove will offer its own ice cream line by the end of the month.

Owner John Hayes said he probably will not get Blue Bell products in the store at all, after the products are available again, which it could take several months.

“It saddens me but it is what it is at this point. By the end of July I expect to have all my ice cream flavors done,” said Hayes.

Currently, Hayes is buying ice cream from three other companies. However, he said the products are more expensive than Blue Bell. In addition, he only has 12 flavors available, which is half of the selection he had with Blue Bell.  

He is also selling Hawaiian Shave ice at the moment but the sales are still down 50 percent.

"I cannot survive the way things are right now. If I don't get my customers excited and back into the shop, things are going to go poorly for the Waffle Cone,” said Hayes.

According to Hayes, making his own ice cream line is an expensive proposition but it is the only solution for the business at the moment. Ice cream prices are not expected to increase and customers will approve the flavors before they become permanent.

"We will have taste samplings every Saturday for every new kind of ice cream we make that week and when the customers tell me they like that strawberry, that vanilla, strawberry or that chocolate, that ice cream will become a permanent flavor,” said Hayes.

The homemade ice cream may draw existing customers like Megan Delph more than once a week.

"I like homemade ice cream better than the store bought ice cream or from other manufacturers because you know it's going be clean and there is not going to be anything else in the ice cream and it tastes better,” said Delph.

Hayes said before the recall he considered waiting a couple years to start the ice cream line. However, the circumstances forced their hand to do it now. 

He said the summer months are usually when the business makes profit for the winter time.

"If I don't make enough money to survive the winter, I'll be drawing on funds for that too so it could drag all the way to next Spring until things get back to normal."

He said this year is more about making it through rather than making a profit.  
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