The Comfy Cow is no longer making its flavors in-house.
The Louisville company has contracted an unnamed company to make its ice cream and will auction off its production equipment next month, co-owner Tim Koons-McGee confirmed to Insider Louisville.
The Comfy Cow isn’t going anywhere, though, Koons-McGee said, noting the ice cream production company will use the same recipes and ingredients that The Comfy Cow did.
“We’ve really gotten in a jam this summer,” he said. “We just haven’t been able to keep up with the production. We are not equipped to do it, and it hit us really hard.”
In May, The Comfy Cow apologized to customers for running low on ice cream after its main ice-cream-making machine broke down. Then earlier this month, the company had to issue a voluntary recall of nine different flavors of ice cream after a test came back showing the ice cream may have been contaminated E. coli or had high counts of coliform.
While the recall was a contributing factor to the decision to outsource, Koons-McGee said the company has been struggling for a while to keep up as it has expanded the retail grocery store side of the business.
“We went into these grocery stores, and we kind of guessed at what the demand would be,” he said. “We just grossly underestimated this. I will take full responsibility for that.”
The Comfy Cow flavors are currently sold in about 525 grocery stores, and Koons-McGee and his partner/co-owner Roy Koons-McGee hope to grow that part of the business even more.
“We are not set up to grow like that here,” he said, not entirely closing the door on the idea that one day production could be brought back in-house.
So, they decided to shutter their local production operations, which included laying off its 15 production workers. The company will auction off its production equipment starting at 9 a.m. on Sept. 26 at its facility at 2710 Holloway Road; Harry Davis & Co. is handling the auction.
Koons-McGee said the company making the ice cream has asked not to be named, but they are a big player in the ice cream world.
“They do it for quite a few brands, and they do some national brands,” he said. “They’ve been in business since 1962. Big tanker trucks come in of cream and milk. They are set up to do major” quantities of ice cream.