Chinese ‘Hermes of ice cream’ under fire for products that do not melt

  • The concerns stem from a series of videos published online that show Chicecream’s ice creams stay solid even under a hot flame
  • This has raised fears that its products are overloaded with additives and some of the ingredients could potentially be harmful
Agence France-Presse |

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Premium Chinese ice cream that does not melt even when set on fire prompts regulator to investigate. Photo: Handout

A Chinese brand once dubbed the “Hermes of ice cream” has come under fire after internet users said some of its products do not melt – even when baked with a blowtorch.

Videos showing Chicecream’s ice creams staying solid when lighters were held to them went viral, revealing they did not fully melt when left in a 31 degree Celsius (88 degree Fahrenheit) room for an hour or under a very hot flame.

The footage sparked consternation online, prompting users to question the company’s high prices and whether the products were overloaded with additives. The most expensive offering of Chicecream – called “Zhong Xue Gao” in Chinese – costs 66 yuan (US$10).

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The company said Wednesday that its products were in line with national food safety regulations.

“We believe that it is not scientific to judge the quality of ice cream by baking, drying or heating ice cream,” the brand said in a Weibo post that scooped up over 168,000 likes.

Agence France-Presse could not verify the videos, and the stabilisers – a food additive used to preserve structure – commonly used in mass-produced ice creams have been widely approved for use, including by the US Food and Drug Administration.

The ice cream did not melt after it was exposed to room temperatures of 31 degrees for a period of time. Photos: Baidu

Wang Silu, a senior national food inspector, also said the products used to thicken the ice cream were safe.

Chicecream has promoted itself as a Chinese alternative to Western brands such as Magnum and Haagen-Dazs, using supposedly natural ingredients and locally-inspired product designs.

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