Free ice cream all day at Ben & Jerry’s? No, it’s NOT an Internet prank, a hoax, or a practical joke. For more than three decades it has been the day to rush to your local Ben & Jerry’s and try the latest flavor or your old favorite – absolutely for free! On Tuesday, April 14, you can participate at your local Scoop Shop for Ben & Jerry’s 36th annual Free Cone Day.
Why did a company decide that giving away their product was the right thing to do? Ben & Jerry’s struggled like almost every business when it first began. Although there were the usual issues about needing more customers and running out of product, there was a clear understanding of how vital the community’s role is in any successful business. And so, just as a thank you, Ben & Jerry’s celebrated its first full year in business in 1979 by scooping free cones all day in the little town of Burlington, Vermont. Now, in 2015 Ben & Jerry’s has blossomed to coordinate a global giveaway in 36 countries resulting in over a million free scoops lovingly distributed.
The company has continued to evolve, expanding its role of being a responsible part of the community, while operating its values-led business. In 2015 Ben & Jerry’s is fighting for climate justice as its social mission focus with a goal of adding 500,000 ice cream fans to become climate activists. Of course the company knows that social action is a lot easier to swallow with a scoop of free ice cream.
“Free Cone Day is our favorite day of the year – it’s our biggest holiday! We get to thank our fans by showing them that we love them by giving away over a million scoops of ice cream,” said Ben & Jerry’s Chief Marketing Officer, Dave Stever. “At Ben & Jerry’s we love our planet, too and being able to make our fans happy while also raising awareness for climate justice one scoop at a time is extra gratifying.”