May 13, 2009

Ice Cream Vans Threatened With Ban - What Do You Think?

On Monday I wrote a blog post called "The Prospect: No More Ice Cream Trucks On Our Streets" and yesterday I was asked by the BBC to join in a radio debate about the threat that currently exists in some parts of the UK to ban ice cream vendors from having licences to park in residential streets to sell their ice cream.

The reaction from not only myself but others taking part including the radio presenter himself was that it is an absurd idea. People also called in afterwards and sent text messages to the same effect. No-one said anything to the contrary! Such is the strong feeling that people have when it comes to ice cream, especially the ice cream van (in the US of course it's the ice cream truck).

As my friend Mary said to me this morning:

"Not only do they supply ice-cream, but they form a social function. They provide a touch of humanity amongst the welter of anonymous traffic."

However, there is always the risk that politicians and policy makers don't listen to 'the common man'. Therefore I'm going to open up this post to comments and invite you to cast your vote:


Please no junk - only serious comments from people interested in ice cream. Thank you.

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  • It is completely insane! I don't like those "lets eat less because fat will clog up our arteries and we'll get heart disease and die" adverts and I don't like the idea that a few killjoys (probably people whose mothers refused to buy ice creams for them as a child) are trying to make the happy tinkling tune that brings joy and happiness into so many people's hearts a thing of the past

    By Blogger Fiona McLean, At May 13, 2009 at 8:59 AM  

  • Hi Shelagh,
    It is crazy, no doubt at all.But maybe by applying some humour we can keep our sanity. So i propose the following rules.Any child who wants an ice cream from the van has to run after the van.....10 yds for every year of age.That should help burn up the calories!

    By Blogger Unknown, At May 13, 2009 at 11:59 AM  

  • Shelagh,

    The UK is one of the leaders in attempting to control the sale of presumably “bad food” in the name of better health. In the case of ice cream this is of course the sugar and fat content. The only problem - the data does not support the association. To confront the food police, we must attack their assumptions ( and they are just that – assumptions).

    The links below are by a woman trying to bring science to the misconception that overweight or even obese is detrimental to your health and further, that your BMI (Body Mass Index) is not all that related to what you eat.

    Glance quickly at these articles:

    Time for some ice cream!!!


    Philip Thackray
    Renfrew, PA, USA

    By Blogger Thackray, At May 13, 2009 at 3:46 PM  

  • I agree with you 100% , Shelagh ,
    I am Rheya , I am with you when you say that it would be a terrible unhuman world without such easy sweet pleasures....the ice cream trucks aren't responsible for children obesity, it's the sedentary life they live that it is.
    When a child plays in the park , an ice cream is the necesary re-filling of energy.....

    By Blogger Masha, At May 15, 2009 at 10:03 AM  

  • Many thanks for the comments to date. The subjects of childhood obesity and the tradition of ice cream trucks clearly invoke strong sentiments. Will the policy makers listen I wonder? ....

    By Blogger Shelagh, At May 15, 2009 at 10:10 AM  

  • We need the welcome sight and sound of the ice-cream van. Sad to say, an underlying dlimate of fear keeps our children off the streets. The ice-cream van dispells these fears, promotes well-being and brings us (along with delicious ice-cream!) our lost sense of community.

    By Blogger Londoner19, At May 19, 2009 at 11:30 PM  

  • Here in the USA, I would love to see the Ice Cream Trucks go the way of the dinosaurs. Dirty dilapidated rusty vans, loud obnoxious repeating music which can be heard for blocks, dirty sweaty filthy disgusting drivers who appear not have bathed or washed clothes in weeks (I do not exaggerate this point! Their smell surrounds the vehicle!), and prices that are out of this world. These are NOT the nice, polite, clean, white-shirted nostalgic ice cream vendors of yesteryear! What we remember is already gone, and what has taken its place is an insult to those memories.

    By Blogger Got_A_Pulse, At May 24, 2009 at 4:48 AM  

  • My fondest memories of the ice cream guys who sold Bungalow Bars , Good Humor and then the arrival of Mr.Softee with his cute song....the young fellow who we knew as Johnnie the Bungalow Bar ice cream guy would even play Punch ball on the streets with us...he became a friend to us all,we even got credit , but honorably we all paid our tabs, you didn't even joke about not paying....the rumor was you didn't want to know what would happen to you if you didn't pay...LOL...we believed it wasn't worth finding out if it was true .....oh, the Toasted Almond & Chocolate eclair Bars....please don't take these heroes of our youth away...then we grew into a different type of bar as our favorite....Was a Pina-Colada an ice cream bar or a drink first !!!Well in Greenpoint ,B'klyn it was the ice cream man's new fruit flavored bar !!!!!

    By Blogger Unknown, At May 26, 2009 at 1:47 PM  

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