Iowa State Dairy Science Club donates ice cream to local organizations

The Iowa State University Food Pantry staff members help load ice cream into their refrigerated truck for delivery to local organizations.

Jill Even

The Dairy Science Club at Iowa State donated 2,200 cups of ice cream to the Iowa State University Food Pantry, Food at First and Salvation Army at the end of July.

Typically, the Dairy Science Club mixes their ice cream to sell weekly during the spring semester of each year. Due to COVID-19, many students left Ames to return home in March. The club’s ice cream sat solitary in a freezer in the meat laboratory in Kildee Hall for five months until the club was able to donate their ice cream.

Club president Cynthia Hamlett held a club meeting to discuss with her officers what to do with the excess ice cream.

“Someone threw around the idea of donating [the ice cream] because we didn’t want it to go to waste,” Hamlett said. “And it was a perfect opportunity to donate to a couple different places in Ames so the community could enjoy it.”

She said moving the ice cream was an “all hands on deck” situation. Club members came together and used their vehicles and manpower to haul the ice cream to its destinations.

Hamlett does not anticipate ice cream production to begin again this fall, but she said she has high hopes for production in the spring as it is the largest source of the club’s income.

“[Typically], we have a sign up for students to come down and spend their time mixing ice cream,” Hamlett said. “They can choose whenever they want to come, but they have to always wear their frock, hairnet, no jewelry and all the different things that are included in working in a food-processing facility.”

The machines and utensils are sanitized, as well as workers’ shoes.

Students mix up the soft serve vanilla and chocolate Erickson Anderson ice cream mix. They hand mix their own different ingredients into the ice cream to make a variety of flavors, such as Oreo and Butterfinger.

“It’s a pretty straightforward process, and I’ve been doing it for quite a while,” Hamlett said. “It doesn’t take too much to learn, so when our new members come down and we have a more experienced member working, they can grasp everything and take the ropes and run.”

The Dairy Science Club is vastly made up of students within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences but accepts anyone interested in dairy science.