Alex Grooms, a 13-year-old eighth-grader from Williamsburg, Ohio, is the winner of the Velvet Ice Cream and Ohio Farm Bureau Create-A-Flavor contest. His creation, Honey Caramel Ice Cream, is a mix of vanilla ice cream layered with sweet Ohio honey and caramel. His entry was selected from more than 800 entries, which had to include at least one locally produced ingredient.
Ohio agriculture and Ohio Farm Bureau members are winners in the contest as well. An agricultural message will be included on the cartons, which will be sold in retail outlets across five states. The carton will also include the Ohio Farm Bureau logo, a picture of a honey producer who is an Ohio Farm Bureau member and a photo of Alex.
“We’re proud to partner with Velvet to spotlight local agriculture,” said Janet Cassidy, OFBF senior director of marketing communications. “Farm Bureau strives to connect consumers and farmers. This new ice cream helps us do that.”
In his entry, Alex wrote, “Using honey as a key ingredient to this new ice cream is important because it will increase the need for honey bee production, which will also help pollinate our Ohio crops.”
“When we read his entry and his interest in helping Ohio farmers, we were extremely impressed, and this seems like another great way for Velvet to stay closely involved with the farming community,” said Luconda Dager, president of Velvet Ice Cream.
Along with receiving free ice cream for a year, Alex will sit on Velvet Ice Cream’s tasting panel for a year. His family also receives a membership in Ohio Farm Bureau.
Second place in the contest was won by Mark Shuliger, 46, of Lewis Center, who created Raspberry Truffle Frozen Yogurt. Third place went to Andrea Thrasher, 27, of Cincinnati, who created Peach Crisp Ice Cream. The runners up receive trophies and free ice cream for a year.
Velvet Ice Cream was founded in 1914 and has been run by four generations of the Dager family. Each year, Velvet produces more than five million gallons of ice cream. Ohio Farm Bureau was founded in 1919 and is the state’s largest general farm organization; its mission is to forge a partnership between farmers and consumers.