Oct 6, 2009

We All Scream: Why Do You Over-Size Your Ice Cream? A Letter to the Cold Stone King:

Mr. Dan Beem, president of Cold Stone Creamery,

Congratulations! This year on Men’s Health’s list of the Unhealthiest Drinks in America 2009, your PB & C shake is number 1! In case you forgot, your peanut butter and chocolate masterpiece has a whopping 2,010 calories. Luckily you snuck by Baskin Robbins that boasts a shake of 2,600 calories because their large size (32 oz) is 3 times your 12 oz “Gotta Have It.” I don’t even know how you packed the calorific equivalent of more than a dozen ice cream sandwiches and more saturated fat than almost 20 large orders of McDonald’s French fries into a single shake, but I have to say… gross factor aside, that’s pretty impressive.

With that out of the way, I’ll get to the main reason for my letter. I’ll start by complimenting your ice cream. I worked at a Cold Stone Creamery for a year in high school and I’m still a fan. When you live and breathe ice cream and often come home smelling like waffle cones after an 8 hour shift and can still say you enjoy eating the ice cream, that is certainly a testament to the deliciousness of a product.

However, given the choice, I would choose a scoop from any other company over a Cold Stone creation after having worked in one of your stores. Did I didn’t hate my job? No! I think it was the best high school job possible. Do I detest Cold Stone creations? No! Apple Pie-a-la-Cold Stone with a touch of brownie is my favorite. It is your sizing I have a problem with. No one really needs 12 oz of ice cream, with an entire candy bar mixed in, plopped in a waffle cone that is dipped in chocolate and covered with bits of more candy. I think in this case, you can have too much of a good thing.

Naturally, ice cream is not the healthiest option for an after dinner snack; that is why we “indulge” in our desserts. However, the gargantuan sizing of Cold Stone ice cream doesn’t only satisfy our sweet tooth, it rots it. With such huge sizes, Cold Stone has taken the classic single scoop and made it a mountain. This excess is extremely unhealthy, promoting poor health, especially for American youth, even furthering the stereotype of American over-indulgence. Now, hamburgers aren’t the only things we super-size.

Besides nutrition, I want to bring up food waste. Today, we are aware of the global hunger crisis more than ever and you should consider how much is wasted in your stores. As a past employee, I have to say, you do not truly realize how much food is wasted on a daily basis until you are the one taking out the trash. The “eyes-are-bigger-than-your-stomach” tendency definitely applies to ice cream. You probably hate to hear this, but even your employees contribute to the waste; it is much easier to make an ice cream bigger than it is supposed to be, than risk a disappointed, ice cream “deprived” customer.

I declare a call to action. Cold Stone Creamy should reconsider their sizes on behalf of their ice cream-loving constituents and the future success of the brand. To foster improved portion control and less food waste, Cold Stone Creamery should scale down their sizing, basing all products off of a “Like it” as a single 3 oz scoop.

As president of the franchise, I hope you will take the comments of concerned customers into consideration and make a change. Thank you for your patience.


Sarah B.

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