Ben and Jerry’s were packed on Tuesday thanks to the promotion of their annual Free Cone Day. From noon until 8 P.M., every customer who came into a Ben and Jerry’s shop would receive ice cream cones free of charge. CEO Jostein Solheim said that this promotion is meant to thank their acolytes for staying loyal to the brand. “Through the power of ice cream, we are able to form strong connections and creates positive social change together. Free Cone Day is one way we show our fans how much we appreciate them,” the CEO said.
The day’s roots go back to 1979, when customers of the first Ben and Jerry’s in Burlington, Vermont were rewarded for keeping the shop open for an entire year. Of course, Ben and Jerry’s has expanded greatly in that time, and now celebrates the day for the 38th year in a row. While final numbers are not in yet, Ben and Jerry’s estimated about a million scoops would be awarded to patient line-waiters. Customers are allowed to get multiple free ice cream cones as long as they wait in lines that inevitably pile up on such a bargain day.
While Ben and Jerry’s is now an experienced ice cream company in American cuisine, they are continually experimenting. This year saw the introduction of three new flavors: Urban Bourbon, Oat of this Swirled and Truffle Kerfuffle. Ben and Jerry’s also introduced Cereal Splashbacks, a type of ice cream that tastes like milk at the bottom of a cereal bowl. That product is available in Fruit Loot, Frozen Flakes and Cocoa Loco flavors.
The ice cream company is using its popularity with the youth to raise awareness for other social issues. On the company’s website, the page that is advertising Free Cone Day also has a section talking about the definition of racism and how to fight its effects on American society.