Hawaii ice cream company facing potential thaw in business

HONOLULU (AP) — While a taste for its flavors may continue, a Hawaii ice cream company is facing an unsavory blow to its business after a supply partner declared bankruptcy.

Dave’s Ice Cream Inc. may have to reduce its supply after last month’s bankruptcy of national food and beverage firm Dean Foods, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

Dave’s sells around 15,000 gallons of ice cream made in Pearl City on Oahu to eateries and stores, owner Dave Leong said.

The company distributes its desserts under a wholesale arrangement with Dean Foods subsidiary Meadow Gold Dairies-Hawaii.

Meadow Gold plans to import ice cream from its plant in St. George, Utah, to supply Hawaii restaurant customers beginning next month, Leong said.

The move would cut off a third of Dave’s business, amounting to more than $1 million annually, Leong said.

“They’re my largest customer,” Leong said. “I’m crippled. I’m really crippled.”

Dallas-based Dean Foods said the change helps centralize manufacturing and provide better quality control.

Dean Foods spokeswoman Anne Divjak said in a statement that “we will continue to work with local ice cream manufacturers to develop specialty ‘island’ and other unique flavors preferred by our local consumers.”


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)