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How A Love For Sweets Started The Ice Cream Factory Family

Shannon Imler was fortunate enough to be raised in rural mid-Missouri on a beautiful family farm.

"Being the oldest of four siblings on our family farm, I learned the value of hard work, determination, and persistence from an early age."

He knew that the sweet small town he grew up in was ready for change, just like he was. Shannon Imler started renovating small spaces, then homes, small buildings, and soon enough grew a passion for reviving historic buildings in the small town of Eldon, Missouri.

With his wife, Katie Imler, by his side he would bring to life the old buildings that once told the rich story of Eldon. Little did he know one of those buildings would become the heart of his childhood dream, a sweets factory that would bring smiles to the faces of kids and families on those famous small town summer days...

When they stumbled upon a dilapidated old Kraft Foods Factory, they felt it needed to be their next project. While they were completely remodeling it, they felt the desire to return it as close to its normal purpose as possible.

The locals would tell them stories about the farmers bringing in milk and them creating dairy products right there in the building and they become fascinated..

From a person who's favorite movie is Willy Wonka, he envisioned a large factory creating deliciousness that others were captivated by. And the idea of making ice cream from scratch came shortly after.

When Shannon and Katie began, they were using a small hand crank machine that produced 2.5 gallons in approximately 2.5 hours. It was an insanely lengthy process that created a lot of arm muscles (ha!)

They experimented until they created 16 of the best flavors they had ever ate and took the leap and opened their first scoop shop in their home town, two months after having their first son, Harrison.

After much success, their business grew and so did their equipment and production processes. They got their first wholesale customer, Ozarkland, that summer and were thrilled that others wanted to sell our ice cream in their stores.

A completely mind opening experience that was.

The last day of February 2020, they opened their second scoop shop and were confronted that following month with an very large obstacle, Coronavirus.

In the midst of the scare of their businesses being shut down, they immediately pivoted to packaging their ice cream in smaller portions and selling to grocery stores.

Little did they know how this pivot would completely transform their business and their future.

Creating the best tasting ice cream has been a trial and error process, just like building a business that they have seemed to navigated it and achieved this with grace and success.

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