- Blue Bell Creameries' ice cream trucks are filled with products and "on the road again," the company said via social media this week.
- The announcement comes about a week after production resumed at Blue Bell's Sylacauga, AL, plant, its first facility to reopen after the company shut down all four creameries, and nearly four months after Blue Bell ordered a full product recall due to listeria contamination.
- Blue Bell is also slowly bringing back employees after laying off over one-third of its workforce following the recall. This includes a dozen employees returning on Monday, and truck drivers, many of whom had been on partly paid furlough since May, will stock the products in grocery stores themselves.
Though Blue Bell has returned to production and distribution once again, that doesn't mean that all retailers will welcome the ice cream products back so readily.
"We’ve still got to meet with our retailers," Joe Robertson, Blue Bell's advertising and public relations manager, told The New York Times. "Retailers have been very supportive of us."
Some stores are anxious to carry the products again. H-E-B, a major grocery retailer in Blue Bell's home state of Texas, has been inquiring as to when it can expect to sell Blue Bell again. The store's spokesperson told The New York Times that H-E-B hopes to get those products back on its shelves in Houston stores in early to mid-September with slow roll-outs to other stores.
Once Blue Bell can convince retailers to restock, the company still has the task of regaining the trust of consumers after both the recall and the way the listeria contamination discovery was initially handled.