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Weckerly’s Ice Cream is a community-focused, sustainable ice cream shop with two locations in Philadelphia, PA. Owners Andy Satinsky and Jen Weckerle have curated an exquisite flavor profile of unique homemade ice creams to spread the love of good food in the community. Since 2012, this pair has engineered a small business that emphasizes local ingredients, positive environmental impact, and connecting with ice cream lovers all over the city. Through their endeavors, Weckerly’s Ice Cream brings impact to SDG 9, SDG 11, and SDG 12.
Weckerly’s promise to source from local farms was the catalyst into opening a small dairy farm near their Philadelphia headquarters. This allows Weckerly’s to have control over how they pasteurize their milk, cream, eggs, and sugar which lowers carbon footprint and fosters innovation and positive infrastructure around their local community. Along with their emphasis on delivering quality creations to ice cream lovers, Weckerly’s Ice Cream also emphasizes sustainable innovation. In order to construct unique recipes and innovate between agriculture in their ice cream, they outsource from Seven Stars Farm, a biodynamic farm concerned with the interconnected relationship of soil, plants, and animals. Their business model and operations are among the most innovative in the frozen dessert industry, and they use their structure to help solve SDG 9.
Andy has long been a champion for local involvement and creating a sense of community, especially in the Philadelphia area. Jen has a professional background in the pastry industry with a knack for original and unique tastes. Together, they knew they could create something truly special. Weckerly’s was ultimately created as a way to share both of their passions while being an ultimate force for good, from how they source their ingredients to how they pay their employees and treat customers like family. “Our aim is to be closely connected to our ingredients while making positive connections with as many people as possible”, Weckerly’s states, proving that they are much more than just a scoop of ice cream. To achieve this, they knew they would need to take the unconventional path and truly create a labor of love to make their business an local agent for change.
The overall impact of Weckerly’s innovation is to foster positive infrastructure around the local Philadelphia community. One short-term effect of their innovation is that they increased their autonomy through possessing control over their milk, cream, and egg pasteurization process. This not only allows Weckerly’s to deliver high quality, carefully constructed products to delight customers in the short term, but it also lowers the company’s carbon footprint. Their partnership with Seven Stars Farm has enhanced their flavor profile through outsourcing ingredients to Weckerly’s stores that have allowed them to add wheat, gluten, and dairy free sorbet to their product line. A long-term effect resulting from their work with Seven Stars Farm is an enduring relationship that continues to center itself around the importance of the interconnectedness of soil, plant, and animal life. As Weckerly’s continues their innovation with both their dairy farm and outsourcing from Seven Stars Farm, they will continuously become more knowledgeable about their ingredients, how to make recipes that best represent them, and ideate additional ways to positively impact their business, ice cream lovers, and the planet.
Weckerly’s Ice Cream sustainably conscious innovation benefits the business internally and externally. Internally, the attention to detail given to gathering, extraction, and distribution of their ingredients greatly increases their product quality. (For example) When the cows at Seven Stars Farms are cared for sustainability from cradle to cradle, the milk they produce contains higher levels of butterfat; higher butterfat from cows increases the quality of ice cream: “Purchasing a high percentage of local ingredients means that our dollars are reinvested in sustaining agriculture. Furthermore each ingredient has less miles to travel, both reducing fuel consumption AND tasting better!” Externally through supply and demand, Weckerly’s higher quality, sustainable products allows them to justifiably price their items higher than the cheaper, unsustainable options in their brick and mortar market. However, the increased cost of their products is grossly outweighed by the overall impact of their business activities.
Weckerly’s Ice Cream innovation benefits society and the environment in two different ways: externally with their customer and community interactions, and internally with the selection of the suppliers for the flavor profile. Externally, Weckerly’s takes pride in the delivery of their high quality products by adopting the customer service model of the “10-4 Rule”. This model is considered the bare minimum for all Weckerly’s employees in all their services. These customer interactions (whether in the store or at company events) increases the happiness of the communities the company serves in. Internally, Weckerly’s selects suppliers very carefully in the production process their sustainability goals. For example, the company has an agreement with Seven Stars Farms, who takes an ethical and sustainable approach in the milk they supply. The cows that produce the milk are nurtured from cradle to cradle, and they are fed a variety of crops organically grown on the farm. This shows that suppliers in the agricultural industry can be environmental stewards while producing high quality products.
Andrew Satinsky, Co-founder
Weckerly’s Ice Cream was born in 2012, the brainchild of Pastry Chef, Jen Weckerle. Originally nestled in the back of a neighborhood café in West Philadelphia, Weckerly’s blossomed into a “micro-creamery” churning out of Globe Dye Works, a repurposed textile plant in North Philadelphia.
From the beginning, we sought to build relationships with local farmers and purveyors to better understand our ingredients and how to build recipes that best reflect them. These ingredients define our ice cream so we strive to capture their best qualities from bold to nuanced flavors. We tacked a bakery on as well. It’s a space where Jen and the team can experiment with new mix-ins, and ensure that each ice cream sandwich is nestled between two perfect cookies.