Hey, remember back in April when everyone was getting all worked up over the possibility of a worldwide vanilla shortage that could cause ice cream prices to rise and herald the Worst Summer Ever? Then vanilla industry insiders were all, “calm down, Madagascar vanilla production is doing fine and everything is going to be okay” and we breathed a sigh of relief that the summer could still be saved? Well, just kidding: apparently vanilla is doing just fine after all but ice cream itself is experiencing a shortage! Talk about your red herrings.
The Wall Street Journal dropped the story on a shortage of Good Humor ice cream treats being delivered to ice cream truck vendors. It’s a shortage that the company itself blames on both the closing of its Hagerstown manufacturing plant and an early sales spike from a warmer-than-usual spring. For both of these reasons, Good Humor is apparently having some issues getting its Toasted Almond, Candy Center Crunch, and Chocolate Éclair bars out to those who really need them, and ice cream trucks on the East Coast are already reportedly feeling the sting of a drop in sales:
[Brian Collis, owner of Mr. Ding-a-Ling Ice Cream Inc. in Latham, N.Y.] said customers of his 68 trucks in the area around Albany suffered through a shortage of Good Humor Oreo bars for most of the spring and now can only get Toasted Almond Bars from a grocery store.
"The Toasted Almond's such an old-time thing from the 1950s," he said. "It's just such a basic thing we've always had. Now everybody's missing it."
He said Good Humor supply problems have taken a 5 percent bite out of his sales.
The WSJ reports that things aren’t so bad out on the West Coast, where Toasted Almond bars aren’t so popular and are rarely carried (we can vouch for that through the purely anecdotal evidence that we’ve never had them ourselves – they sound pretty tasty though!), but folks back east are demanding their ice cream of choice. Good Humor representatives swear that everything should be cool again by the middle of summer. But until then, the children of the Eastern seaboard will have to soothe their broken hearts with King Cones and Giant Neapolitan Sandwiches until this crisis passes.