The Truth About Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard

Correction 4/25/22: A previous version of this article stated the Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard is located in Burlington, Vermont. Its location is in Waterbury, Vermont.  

Known for their creative flavor combinations, everyone knows the famous ice cream brand Ben & Jerry's, but even the most self-proclaimed fans may be shocked to find out about the Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard. What is a flavor graveyard, you may be wondering? Like everything in this life, all good things come to an end. For Ben & Jerry's, instead of simply retiring flavors, old ice cream pints go to rest in their Flavor Graveyard.

Did you have a favorite Ben & Jerry's flavor that suddenly disappeared? Do flavors like This is Nuts, Chocolate Comfort, or Peanut Butter and Jelly ring a bell? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you might wonder what happened to all these flavors. We did the research, so you can learn all about where Ben & Jerry's pints go to rest from the comfort of your home. Here is the fascinating truth about Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard.

The flavor graveyard is in Waterbury, Vermont

Many people laugh at the discussion of a flavor graveyard. Even the most devoted Ben & Jerry's customers do not know the Flavor Graveyard exists. Visitors can find the ice cream cemetery in the backyard of the company's factory in Waterbury, Vermont, which over 350,000 people visit yearly. With this many people visiting the factory, we can assume a large amount find their way to the Flavor Graveyard too. 

Ben & Jerry's created the Flavor Graveyard as a way for customers to mourn the loss of their favorite flavors that were no longer available in stores. In typical creative and fun Ben & Jerry's fashion, this included an actual graveyard overlooking their factory with granite headstones and clever causes of death for each flavor.

Videos found online give off a Disneyland haunted mansion feel. Still, you will have to visit Waterbury, for a tour to truly experience the Flavor Graveyard and its spooky ice cream glory.

Pints are not physically buried in the grave

Did you think tiny pints placed in miniature graves got buried in the Flavor Graveyard? While the idea of a pint-sized grave seemed fascinating, unfortunately, that is not the case with Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard.

The only thing buried in the graveyard is the memories of our favorite ice cream flavors that are no longer with us. Visitors of the Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard mourn the loss of many ice cream flavors like Oatmeal Cookie Chunk, Dublin Mudslide™, and Crème Brûlée, to name a few.

While physical pints do not remain under the soil, headstones mark the flavors that once took up space in our freezers. With the witty messaging, birth date, and date of death outlined on the granite tombstone, it can be easy to imagine a small yet delicious pint buried beneath the dirt. For now, we will continue to carry these flavors in our hearts and minds.

The flavor graveyard began with only four headstones

Ben & Jerry's constructed the Flavor Graveyard in 1997, beginning with only four monuments to remember the beloved pints no longer enjoyed (via Ben & Jerry's). According to an October 1, 2015, Ben & Jerry's blog post highlighting the dearly de-pinted, the original four flavors were Dastardly Mash, Economic Crunch, Ethan Almond, and Tuskegee Chunk. These flavors existed only in the United States.

As Ben & Jerry's invented more flavors, you guessed it, more flavors also found their way to the graveyard. Since its inception, the flavor graveyard has added 35 other flavors. These flavors include Sugar Plum, Rainforest Crunch, Coconutterly Fair, etc. Watching your favorite flavor pass on can be challenging, but we find comfort in knowing our beloved Holy Cannoli is not alone in the Flavor Graveyard. On a positive note, you can always visit the memorial of your favorite flavors in person for a final goodbye.

The graveyard actually exists in one other place

We've established that the Flavor Graveyard lives in the backyard of the Ben & Jerry's factory. However, ice cream lovers can also visit the graves without leaving their homes via Ben & Jerry's website. The digital graveyard highlights the flavors passed on and is complete with digital tombstones outlining their illustrious lives.

Every flavor in the digital graveyard contains a graphic tombstone outlining its best qualities, time on the shelves, and a creative poem highlighting its life. For example, the flavor, Schweddy Balls, coined from the famous "Saturday Night Live," skit lives on in the digital graveyard. On the website, you can find a snippet of the poem describing the flavor with lines like, "Fudge-covered rum balls & malt balls galore!" While it may be devastating to reflect on the flavors that are no more, Schweddy Balls lived an extraordinary life despite its short shelf life.

The flavor graveyard has hosted ice cream funerals

Grab your tissues and bow your heads for a moment of silence for the beloved flavor, What a Cluster. The United States-based flavor contained peanut butter ice cream with caramel cluster pieces, marshmallow swirls, and peanut buttery swirls. Unfortunately, this delicious flavor did not receive the love it deserved and found its way to the Flavor Graveyard like many other flavors.

This flavor held a special place in Ben & Jerry's heart, so they held an ice cream flavor funeral at the Flavor Graveyard. Ben & Jerry's filmed the funeral and posted it on YouTube to maximize the respect paid to the delicious What a Cluster flavor by including the digital graveyard visitors. No detail was spared in this ice cream funeral preparation. We watched, shed a tear, and honored the peanut butter, caramel goodness, What a Cluster, truly a flavor that'll be missed.

The flavor graveyard is about more than ice cream

The fallen Fossil Fuel flavor consists of sweet cream ice cream, chocolate cookie pieces, fudge dinosaurs, and a fudge swirl. While the flavor undoubtedly tastes delicious, the Fossil Fuel ice cream is not the only thing Ben & Jerry's wants to bury. In addition to this ice cream flavor making its way to the graveyard, Ben & Jerry's decided to figuratively bury fossil fuel pollution as well (via Ben & Jerry's).

The company believes all fossil fuels belong in the ground in an effort to help climate change. Ben & Jerry's supports many causes, and climate change happens to be one of them. The brand makes a conscious effort to work toward a cleaner energy economy. With the act of burying the Fossil Fuel flavor in the ground, Ben & Jerry's sends a message while ensuring that their delicious ice cream continues to warm the hearts and taste buds of dessert lovers everywhere.

Flavors can actually rise from the graveyard

Say what? Yes, you read that correctly. Ben & Jerry's flavors can actually rise from the dead. As we know, flavors go to the graveyard for many reasons. The dearly de-pinted flavors, although favorites to some, did not sell as well as the popular flavors you continue to find on store shelves.

If one of your favorite flavors found itself in the Flavor Graveyard, have no fear. On every flavor's digital grave page, you can choose to "Resurrect My Favorite Flavor." Clicking this button will direct you to a "contact us" web form where you can petition for your favorites to come back to store shelves. In March 2022, Ben & Jerry's brought back the Dublin Mudslide, much to the delight of countless fans. 

The form asks which flavor you would like to bring back, why you like the flavor so much, and your name and address. If your favorite flavor disappeared, run, don't walk to the Ben & Jerry's website to petition for it to make a triumphant return.