PADUCAH – After a long day in hot weather, an ice cream sundae could be the icing on the cake to end your day. But the stores might be out of your favorite flavors.
Indeed, inflation leads to a shortage of products and ingredients in ice cream parlours. In response, they are making changes to their operations.
Whether it’s swapping products for an alternative or buying things weeks in advance, these stores are trying to stay cool under the pressure of inflation.
The chocolate factory in Golconda, Illinois is recovering from the shortage of a vital product for its shop: chocolate.
“We couldn’t get the products we needed, and there was just no supply there,” says manager Angela Bailey. It’s over, but they’re not out of the woods yet.
Another product they are missing now is the difficulty of getting ice cream from coolers to customers.
“We are seeing shortages of paper products. Styrofoam napkins, paper towels, cups and lids. We see shortages. These are hard to get,” says Bailey.
Frozen yogurt shops see this too.
Andy Burch, co-owner of Swirl’s Frozen Yogurt in Paducah, says the store had no choice but to make changes.
“We can’t get them anymore. We searched everywhere. So we switched to a paper cup, which a lot of yogurt shops use and it works. But it’s just not the customer’s favorite,” says Burch.
It’s more than cups. Specialty flavors like birthday cake are difficult to store in machines.
And strawberry boba is one of their most popular toppings. These prices have skyrocketed.
“For a container, $80 to $120 at any given time. A few weeks later, it may fall again. So she watches the price. When the price gets reasonable enough, if it’s possible, she’ll buy as much as she can,” Burch says.
Despite these difficulties, Swirl’s still provides the same service at the same price.
“In fact, we have not increased our price per ounce. And we try to be reasonable for the customer who comes in, because we know everything is expensive,” says Burch.
Business was steady during the winter months.
They expect it to pick up even more as the weather warms.
They rely on traffic and customer loyalty to keep these prices low.
Chocolate Factory also keeps ice cream prices the same.
Tourist season in the nearby Shawnee National Forest brings business they rely on as well.