ISU screams for ice cream with signature ice cream contest


Hannah Olson / Iowa State Daily

Food science club members hand out free ice cream they made using liquid Nitrogen in MacKay Hall on Wednesday.

Manichanh Naonady

This first and only ISU Signature Ice Cream Contest allows students to win cash prizes and provides the stepping stones for Iowa State to build a creamery in the future.

The contest, hosted by the Department of Food and Human Nutrition, is in full effect until Nov. 15.  This contest is open to all Iowa State students and the top three developers will win cash prizes, with the grand prize being $500. 

“By launching a contest, what we hope is that the students will send us such great ideas, that this will become the signature ice cream for many years,” said Dr. Stephanie Clark, a professor in food science and human nutrition. 

Students may enter individually or as a team up to four.

“I will be participating in a group with three other members,” said Geena Whalen, senior in food science and participant in the contest. “I decided to go this route because this allows the product to be created with several people’s perspectives. It also allows the group members to work on their target skill areas.”

Participants are also required to submit a formulation of their creation and a promotional video. 

“We want creativity but there is also a science behind it,” Clark said.

The ice cream creation will be judged based on: the ice cream name/flavor appeal/ISU theme, product description, mix and flavoring formulation and the promotional video.

“I know many people that are intimidated by the formulation aspect,” said Amanda Speltz, junior in food science and participant in the contest. “However, 75 percent of the judging doesn’t focus on the actual formulation. It requires you to learn new skills and reach out.”

This contest also intends to bring awareness of a future creamery being built on campus in the following years.

“We want to get people excited about that,” Clark said. “To know that is our plan, and we want students involved in that process.” 

This may be the first signature ice cream contest at Iowa State but this will not be the first creamery on campus. Iowa State did have a creamery in the early ’70s, but it was shut down.

“The university didn’t have the same kind of expenses as farmers,” Clark said. “All of the farmers had to pay property taxes, so some were losing money and going out of business.”

Dr. Clark stresses on the dairy presence and the importance of having a creamery back at Iowa State.

“Iowa State is a land grant institution, it is the state school that is deeply rooted in agriculture and we have a strong dairy industry,” Clark said. 

“We want to bring it back,” said Clark. “We want Iowa State University to have that clear message that we promote dairy, we value it, and we’re here to train the next generation… we need a facility to do that and that’s what I’m working toward.”

Not only will the winning participant receive a cash prize, but they will also leave their mark at Iowa State.

“We are hoping this product will be such a great idea that it will be a featured product at events,” said Clark. “I see it as an opportunity to leave your lega-CY.”

Entries must be submitted by 4 p.m. on Nov. 15 to Dr. Stephanie Clark at [email protected]. Winners will be announced on Dec. 8.