My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: How JA$130 Lasco Ice Dream dessert mix will revolutionize the Jamaican Ice Cream market

Sunday, January 24, 2016

How JA$130 Lasco Ice Dream dessert mix will revolutionize the Jamaican Ice Cream market

DIY (Do it Yourself) ice cream makers who loved the cookies and cream food drink, great news!

Lasco is launching a powdered Ice Dream dessert mix as reported in the article “Lasco Enters Market With Powdered Ice Cream”, Published Sunday January 24, 2016 by Tameka Gordon, The Jamaica Gleaner

This marks the first time that any company in Jamaica is selling powdered ice cream, which works in the same way like Lasco's powdered milk products or even pancake mix; just add water!

Lasco is no stranger to innovation, as their financial arm, Lasco Financial Services, has partnered with Huawei to sell unlocked smartphone as reported in my blog article entitled “Huawei and Lasco to sell Unlocked dual-SIM smartphones - Why Number Portability means Open Market for unlocked smartphone”. 

The product had been teased in an article profiling Gleaner Honour Award recipient Lacelles Chin and his company Lasco as reported in the article “Gleaner Honour Award: Lasco Affiliated Companies - ICool Quenches The Market”, published Tuesday January 19, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner with pictures showing what the product will look like as shown below.

 Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix , slated to hit the shelves in the week starting Monday January 25th 2016, is the result of three (3) years of research to quote Beverage Marketing Manager Catherine Goodall: “We were working for the last three years to bring an affordable ice cream that everybody will love. So the taste had to be right and the price has to be right”.

Currently Lasco plans to sell two (2) flavours:

1.      Vanilla
2.      Chocolate

Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix is to be sold in 130 gm packs costing between JA$110 to JA$120 including tax. Lasco is projecting a 20% increase in their 'powdered' line of goods. One of these powdered milk products, the Lasco cookies and cream powdered milk, was already being used to make ice cream. Hugely popular, it was discontinued as it was costly to make.

Lasco also has plans to reformulate it and re-introduce the Lasco cookies and cream powdered milk during the launch of Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix. Interestingly, Lasco's Ice Dream dessert required no extra Capital expenditure or equiptment. This as the same line that makes the Lasco powdered milk was used to package the formula for the powdered Ice Dream dessert mix.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg, pun intended, as Lasco is sitting on a huge revolution as it relates to starting a trend towards homemade Ice cream.

Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix - Homemade ice cream lover rejoice

However, if you know how to make homemade ice cream, you'd realize something interesting; these two (2) flavours can be used as the base to make any other flavor.

So says Beverage Marketing Manager Catherine Goodall, quote: “The most exciting thing about the product is that the vanilla flavour can be used as a base to make so many other flavours. Chefs can use it to make desserts”.

Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix can be the base to make Glow-In-The Dark Ice Cream as described in my blog article entitled “How to make Glow-In-The Dark Ice Cream from Scratch - US$25.95 Zoku Ice Cream Bowl makes Avatar The Last Airbender Frozen Novelties”.  

You can even use it to make edible Chocolate Bowls to place the ice cream for eating as explained in my blog article entitled “How to Make Edible Chocolate Bowls for Ice Cream – Satisfy My Bowl that’s Sweet to Eat”.

But what has many excited is the storage for this product. It requires no refrigeration, as in its powdered form, it can be stored in an airtight container once the package is pulled. Interestingly, early secret testing by Lasco suggests that it's a hit with children, the primary motivation to buy ice cream in the first place.

This has some huge implications for the entire Ice Cream market as we know it in Jamaica.

Lasco vs Caribbean Cream Limited and Smith & Stewart Distributors - Ice Cream War looms in Jamaica

The fact that it doesn’t require storage means that it'll be possible to sell ice cream as a fast food without the need from a refrigerator.

If Lasco decided to manufacture this in large bulk sizes for retailers, all you'll need is a set up a production line in your ice cream shop with all of the component needed to make ice cream.

This isn't being done as yet, but it demand by shoppers for the Ice Dream dessert mix is good, then they'll go that route, quote: “Chairman (Lascelles Chin) is always trying to find things that the Jamaican consumer needs and tries to give it to them at an affordable price. So, to think about a sachet of ice cream that you can make almost a pint of ice cream from ... you can't buy a pint of ice cream for $120. If we do have the overwhelming response that we are hoping for, then yes”.

But let's imagine that they did sell the Ice Dream dessert mix in bulk for retailers and wholesalers. The ice cream could be mixed together and then using dry ice, you can make the ice cream in less than 5 minutes.

In a fast food restaurant, this could cut the cost of refrigeration, as you could make batches of ice cream on demand just for the day. This means no leftovers and the reduced chance of spoilage, which was the main reason why they developed the Lasco's Ice Dream dessert mix, quote: “Everybody loves ice cream, but not everybody has the storage for ice cream so we wanted it to be more accessible something that you can mix whenever you want it”.

This makes Lasco a potential competitor to Caribbean Cream Limited, currently the kings of the Ice cream market with their Kremi product as explained in the article “Kremi Secures Low-Cost Raw Materials, Triples Profit”, published Wednesday January 13, 2016 by Camilo Thame, The Jamaica Gleaner.

They could even go into making it and distributing their Ice Dream dessert mix using specially designed mobile carts, crowdsourcing the labour to sell the retail version of the product, something that Smith & Stewart Distributors, the makers of Crazy Jim ice cream, are doing as explained in the article “Crazy Jim Builds Street Vending Network For Ice Cream”, published Wednesday August 5, 2015, by Tameka Gordon, The Jamaica Gleaner.

At this point, we'll have to wait until this product to hit the shelves before I can declare it a success. But from all accounts, Lasco may be sitting on a huge goldmine and a chance to revolutionize the Ice Cream industry once and for all.

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