Fun Facts About Ice Cream

Fun Facts about ice cream abound. It’s no wonder that one of the world’s favorite treats should also give rise to lots of folklore, stories and interesting trivia. Here is some of my favorite ice cream lore.

Fun Fact: Ice Cream Wins the War!

Did you know ice cream played its part in helping the Allies win WWII?

During WWII the US Navy spent over a million dollars to build a floating ice cream parlor, deeming ice cream vital to sailors' morale. It also built several floating ice cream manufacturing and storage plants, known as ice cream ships. The floating ice cream parlor produced 1,500 gallons of ice cream an hour!

Getting those ice cream ships out became a priority once the Navy realized that the Army was setting up ice cream stations near the front lines and delivering pints of the good stuff right to soldiers in the foxholes. Why shouldn’t sailors deserve the same, right?

In fact, ice cream became such a symbol of America that Mussolini actually banned the sale of ice cream throughout Italy. No wonder he lost the war – how could he ban it in the land that claims to have given birth to ice cream? In any case, Italian soldiers cannot have been very motivated to fight for a man who, after banning the treat, then went on to complain that the people of Italy were a "mediocre race of good-for-nothings only capable of singing and eating ice cream."

WWII was also seminal to ice cream history for another reason. Two veterans, once discharged from the Army, decided to move to California and eventually started the Baskin Robbins franchise ice cream stores. To increase turnover in their stores, they deliberately installed uncomfortable chairs, so customers wouldn’t linger too long over their scoops. It didn’t deter ice cream lovers though!

One of the reasons Ben and Jerry’s started in Vermont? It was the only state without a Baskin Robbins franchise!

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