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June 12, 2008

Of Bees and Whirled Peace: Ice Cream Brand Naming Gets a (Bigger) Conscience

VHBpint.pngIce cream brand naming is becoming even more socially conscious. One of Häagen-Dazs' new ice cream flavors, Vanilla Honey Bee, is now firmly associated with preserving the bee population in the West, by donating a portion of the proceeds to a Penn State/University of California research initiative which is examining why so many bees are dying.

The Häagen-Dazs Loves Honey Bees campaign is partnering with and is involved with National Pollinator Week (June 22-28) via a Washington D.C. “Ice Cream Social on the Hill” event.

Häagen-Dazs have also partnered with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums as well as “A NEW HIVE art installation, hosted by Earnest Sewn” at the New York Earnest Sewn store. They are even making a bee documentary.

I applaud Häagen-Dazs for their effort and for associating its brand name with such a good cause and I can’t help being reminded of The Bee Movie’s cry for help on behalf of the beleaguered bees. I’m sure that Häagen-Dazs is more than happy to have a toe in the kids’ market now that bees are cool.

Not to bee outdone, Ben & Jerry’s, who have long been associated with socially conscious ice cream, launched a new John Lennon inspired flavor called “Imagine Whirled Peace” on May 27th, which comes after the company’s ONE Cheesecake Brownie flavor supporting’s efforts to eradicate poverty.

They are already offering rewards to people to promote peace as an effort that will further popularize the brand name, which borrows from two popular sources: the powerful Lennon brand name, as well as everyone’s desire for a war free world.

It makes perfect sense to me for ice cream to become more and more socially conscious. But of the two brand names, I am more impressed by the Ben and Jerry’s long-term efforts.

Ben and Jerry’s is careful to link nebulous social sentiments to celebrity names like Jerry Garcia (Cherry Garcia) and John Lennon.

beemovie.pngOne has to wonder, however, if Häagen-Dazs has benefited from getting Jerry Seinfeld, the voice behind the main character in The Bee Movie, to lend his own name to the new flavor.

Then again, Baskin-Robbins has been churning out great ice cream naming for years and not getting the same kudos.

Still, knowing that a tub of $4 ice cream is helping save the bees—or the world—helps alleviate some of the guilt that comes from a great dish or scoop of ice cream!

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Posted by William Lozito at June 12, 2008 8:09 AM
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