JOPLIN, Mo. – Following an outpour of satisfied customers, locally owned ice cream manufacturer Ice Cream Factory is now being sold at Food 4 Less and Cash Saver in Joplin.
Owned by husband and wife Shannon and Katie Imler, Ice Cream Factory first opened its doors on April 5, 2019, in Eldon, Missouri.
It all started when the Imlers bought an old cheese factory and knew they wanted to do something special with it.
They turned the building into Ice Cream Factory and started creating their product. The building includes a “scoop shop” where the Imlers can serve their ice cream to customers directly.
After two months of selling ice cream out of their scoop shop, local store Ozarkland approached the business wanting to resell Ice Cream Factory’s product.
At first, Shannon Imler was hesitant to sell their ice cream to other businesses, but ultimately decided that that was the best thing for Ice Cream Factory.
All was going well until the pandemic began and Ice Cream Factory started losing business. To counteract this, they started packaging their ice cream and delivering it. That’s when they decided to get their ice cream into grocery stores.
In the past nine months, business has grown. Ice Cream Factory is now being sold in 280 stores across Missouri. They also have a second scoop shop located in Jefferson City.
“Our slogan is ‘ice cream makes you happy’ and I really believe that, because it makes me happy everyday – everybody I get to work with, everybody I meet,” said co-owner Shannon Imler. “It’s a good experience, it’s fun, it’s something I always look forward to – just as most people when they get ice cream, they look forward to eating it. So it’s just a really, really fun thing to do that I enjoy.”
So why choose Ice Cream Factory? Their ice cream is made with real ingredients, most of which are made in house, it has a high butterfat content, hand layered inclusions, is always fresh and made daily, and is packaged with clear lids so you can see exactly what’s inside. Being a locally owned, family business is just the cherry on top.
Ice Cream Factory’s goal is “to sell more ice cream than Ben and Jerry’s,” according to Shannon Imler. With over 100,000 likes on Facebook and fans all over Missouri, they are well on their way.