Author: Camille Hawkey

Are you prepared to reopen? Tips on how to “restart” your business.

We are all excited about shops and restaurants reopening, but things will be different for a while now, and BEING PREPARED IS ESSENTIAL.

Ensuring safety regulations are met, reorganizing the work with limited staff, sanitizing the production kitchen and making sure customers still have an enjoyable experience, will be new challenges in the coming months.

How to deal with getting ready for the busy season in such circumstances? What strategy to adopt to overcome the crisis?

Here are some tips on how to “restart your business”:

  1. Schedule work shifts to limit the number of employees on the premises.
  2. Organize cleaning routines for your location that respect the CDC guidelines. Training is key!
  3. Create safety distances inside the premises. Limit the amount of people coming inside at a time.
  4. Use signage: on your door to say that you’re open and/or if you deliver, and on your floor (decals) so that people respect distances!
  5. Provide customers with hand sanitizer and/or gloves. Employees wear gloves and masks at all times.
  6. Encourage your customers to order in advance thru phone, text, or email and have them pay in advance.
  7. Have customers wait outside – employee will deliver at the front door, and/or window/pick up area.
  8. Communicate online and in your shop about how you manage the situation.
  9. Listen to your customers’ concerns in order to adapt to the evolving market by adjusting your offers over time.
  10. Offer to-go solutions such as gelato or ice cream pints, frozen pops, ice cream cakes, ice cream sandwiches, milkshakes, sundaes..
  11. Cone servings: Use cone sleeves or napkins to wrap the cone.
  12. Promote delivery services! If available, your own delivery services or 3rd parties such as Door Dash or Uber Eats!
  13. Make sure your online listings are updated if you hours have changed and update your website with your store services, products and payment options.
  14. Use social media to show how you operate to re-insure customers of good safety practices (take pictures!).
  15. Switch to method of payment 100% touch-less: Credit Card, Apple Pay or similar.
  16. Avoid giving away samples or using any reusable silverware to do so.
  17. Create attractive promotions to bring back traffic.
  18. Make sure you always have inventory of to-go products. While working reduced hours, it is crucial to have enough merchandise in stock to make the most sales.
  19. Handle your cash flow seriously to be able to stay open.
  20. Offer small bonus to to your employees.

As always, refer to your state regulations for any COVID-19 related precautions and legal permissions on how to conduct your business.

STAY POSITIVE! We are all in this together and we are always here to help. Reach out to your sales and/or technical team if you need help! We are now offering live demos, and supporting you in any way we can from training to marketing.

Summer Ice Cream Sandwiches

Editor’s note: There are some things that never get old—a favorite movie, song, or food to name a few—these are the things you can indulge in over and over again. And in the dessert world, the ever-popular ice cream sandwich is a sweet classic that consistently gets better with time. That’s why we brought back this P Magazine article “The Not-So-New, But Beloved Novelty: The Ice Cream Sandwich” by Camille Hawkey, area manager, PreGel North America, to shine a spotlight on summer’s favorite sammie just in time for National Ice Cream Month.

Green Mint Gelato Cookie Sandwich


Though once branded a cheap, street food treat, the ice cream sandwich is now considered a classic. This is quite an accomplishment, as the history of the ice cream sandwich paints a much humbler beginning. According to several food history sources, the popular sweet delight was introduced in the late 19th century and was sold to the “common folks” for no more than a penny. Today, brands capitalize on nostalgia to develop different forms of ice cream sandwiches, and the treat is so popular that it has its own national day on August 2nd!


A Little Bit of History
By the end of the 19th century, ice cream was so popular in American society that many inventions emerged. According to the Joy of Baking, the 1920s saw the first chocolate-covered ice cream bar, also known as Eskimo Pie®, the now-famous banana split, ice cream cakes in many forms and the ice cream sandwich.

Banana Split Ice Cream Panini Sandwich

Even if the true origins of the ice cream sandwich remain blurry, Jeri Quinzio says in his book Of Sugar and Snow: A History of Ice Cream Making that it was seen for the first time in New York City in 1899. The treat back then differed a little bit from what you think of the ice cream sandwich today both in its simplicity and its price. As the story goes, a pushcart peddler was selling ice cream sandwiches in the street as an innovative solution for ice cream lovers to enjoy their favorite dessert on the go – he simply put a scoop of ice cream in between two graham wafers. The idea behind the creation of the ice cream sandwich was to keep your hands clean. At that time, the ice cream sandwich man, who sold these treats for only one cent to the crowd, became a source of attention to a large audience, including journalists. In the summer of 1900, the New York Tribune dedicated a whole column to the vendor.

The success of the ice cream sandwich was so great that a single man could not respond to the growing demand in New York, and other cart vendors started to imitate the creation and spread the concept throughout the country.


Unicorn Macaron Ice Cream Sandwich


Evolution & Recent Developments
Moving into the 20th century, in 1977, Richard E. Lamotta invented the Chipwich, an ice cream sandwich made with chocolate chip cookies as the “bread”, which quickly became very popular, according to The Dictionary of American Food and Drink by John Mariani. In 1987, U.S. scientists created freeze-dried Space Bar Ice Cream Sandwiches that featured ice cream frozen to a solid -40°F. According to Nitro-Pack, the sandwiches were used by NASA during the Apollo space program. Today, the ice cream sandwich is a very popular dessert that can be found on restaurant’s menus, mom & pop shops, food trucks or simply in anyone’s kitchen, as the preparation does not require vast culinary skills.

Pistachio Donut Ice Cream Sandwich

Recent innovations in the U.S. that fall into the ice cream sandwich category include all sorts of creative flavor combinations, cookies, macarons, chocolate cakes, donuts and decorations to satisfy all taste buds. From flowers to herbs and spices, the ice cream sandwich leaves open doors to inspiration and original creations.

Inspired from other Italian culinary offerings, the Panini Gelato is a new sandwich option that consists of a sweet bun and a scoop of gelato heated to perfection in a special panini press machine. The treat is gaining a lot of attention as the concept combines a favorite and typical Italian fast-food snack – the Panini and ice cream – to create a delicious dessert that can also be enjoyed on the go. Flavoring can be added with fillings and sauces to realize an elaborate delicacy or to create fancy combinations.

Undoubtedly, the ice cream sandwich is the perfect edible canvas for dessert innovation. This may explain why, even with the increasingly growing list of mouthwatering sandwiches such as sliders, gyros, burgers, flatbread, grilled cheese, etc., and all the yumminess dining out brings, the ice cream sandwich in all its trendy and diverse presentations remains a go-to delicacy all year round, but especially as summer’s favorite sammie. Bonus: they’re Instagrammable, too, which is great for business