"Non-Melting" ice cream put to the test, local Dietitian reacts - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

"Non-Melting" ice cream put to the test, local Dietitian reacts

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Some parents are concerned about a specific kind of ice cream and what it's made of. A video surfaced showing a Walmart Great Value ice cream sandwich sitting outside in the heat for a few hours without melting.

We wanted to figure out why, so we conducted our own experiment. For two hours, we set a Walmart Great Value ice cream sandwich next to a Blue Bunny brand sandwich. We recorded as the sun beat down, and "melted" the ice cream. What we found, was some what of a surprise. The Walmart Great Value ice cream held it's shape, for the most part. But, the Blue Bunny brand was covering the plate it sat on. It had melted into a puddle.

When we reached out to Walmart, they sent us this response: "Ice cream melts based on the ingredients including cream. Ice cream with more cream will generally melt at a slower rate, which is the case with our Great Value ice cream sandwiches."

We wanted to know more, so we stopped by Eat Rite, to talk with registered dietitian Tim Cunningham. "One of the thickening agents that's used often times is called Carrageenan. It's kind of a seaweed extract that thickens when it gets moist," he explained. "There are quite a few things that keep that food structure so it doesn't fall apart," he added.

Regardless Walmart told us those ice cream sandwiches are a top seller. And although it may not melt in a usual fashion, Cunningham says there is a reason why some companies choose to use certain preservatives. "The thought is if you can keep it solid during transportation it will re-freeze back into that state without spilling over. It doesn't mean it's good for you but that's what we demand as consumers, something that looks good and has that right shape and consistency," he said.

Which now just leaves it up to the consumer to consider their options. "Read your ingredients, that's the key with everything. If you can't pronounce it, don't buy it," Cunningham said.

The Great Value Walmart ice cream sandwiches are approved by the Food and Drug Administration, meaning the government finds them safe for people to eat.

Colleen Nelson - NewsChannel 10
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