Why Ben & Jerry's Renamed A Vital Part Of Its Ice Cream Machinery

The ice cream flavors that Ben & Jerry's has created during five decades of operation have never been bland. From Chewy Gooey Cookie to Chunky Monkey, Ben & Jerry's has always been full of deliciousness, usually with added chunky ingredients such as cookie dough, brownies, and fudge flakes.

The story goes that founder Ben Cohen didn't have a good sense of smell, so he wanted to do something to enhance his ice cream flavors. His answer was to incorporate big pieces of flavorful ingredients in the ice cream. Ben & Jerry's has always had roots in Vermont, with its first ice cream shop opening there in 1978, according to the company's website. Only two years later, Ben & Jerry's started to pack its ice cream into pint sizes sold at grocery stores along its restaurant delivery routes. Another momentous introduction in Ben & Jerry's history was in 1987 when it released its Cherry Garcia ice cream, cherry ice cream with cherries and fudge flakes. Since then, they've released more pop culture-inspired flavors, like Netflix & Chill'd (peanut butter ice cream with sweet and salty pretzel swirls and fudge brownies) and Phish Food (chocolate ice cream with gooey marshmallow, caramel swirls, and fudge fish).

Cohen's vision to have ice cream with huge chunks of sweet ingredients continues today, but it takes special equipment to accomplish.

Adding chunks of deliciousness

Every day, Ben & Jerry's produces 1 million pints of ice cream, reports Business Insider. To fill those pints with the signature Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavors, they use a flavor vat with below-freezing temperatures and a sweet cream or chocolate base. The next step is adding the chunks to give the ice cream its quintessential flavor blends, according to Business Insider.

The machine that does this crucial task is called the "Chunk Feeder." The nickname Chunk Feeder was given to a machine that is actually called a "Fruit Feeder." But since Ben & Jerry's uses it for far more than fruit bits, they renamed it, according to the company. Before Ben & Jerry's revolutionized the ice cream business with its chunky additions, ice cream companies stuck to only adding fruit to their ice cream, hence the machine's name. The way the device works is the bits of cookie dough, cookies, brownies, etc., are top loaded in and then incorporated into the ice cream as it goes through the machine, resulting in evenly spread out mix-ins, according to the company.

Thanks to Ben & Jerry's and their Chunk Feeder, we can enjoy flavorful ice cream with extra bits of yumminess.