Companies We Admire: Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is more than just sweet treats. Started by Jeni Britton Bauer in 2002, the company is dedicated to sourcing their ingredients from small, family-owned farms – with milk coming from cows within 200 miles of their kitchen! Their community of growers, producers, suppliers and makers helps deliver a unique ice cream – smooth in texture, with bright flavors achieved without the use of synthetic flavorings, and dyes. They believe that higher quality ingredients come from having personal relationships with the people they’re buying from – and it’s a difference you can taste. 

What makes Jeni’s a B Corp? They use Direct Trade and Fair Trade ingredients. They employ a diverse team of people, working with women- and minority-owned businesses. They also believe in having minimal impact on the environment and shaping the community they work within. These are all great things we can get behind!

We spoke with Christine from Jeni's to learn more. 

What drives your company to continue making the products you do – in the way that you do? 

We don’t know any other way to do it. 

Close partner relationships are important. Knowing our farmers allows us to see how they grow their crops, how they treat the land, how they contribute to their community. It’s a very personal way to do business. Now more than ever, we know how integral those relationships really are. From farmers and suppliers to other ice cream makers to customers to non-profit friends, we’re stronger when we do it together. 

What makes your company unique? 

Jeni Britton Bauer’s intense desire and drive to always move forward. The thoughtful differences amidst our team. Our commitment to each other, to our craft, to our customers. And our resilience. Because when change inevitably comes, we grow, we adapt and learn, and build our bank of experience and solutions. All the work that went into building connections and partners and making the right decision—while we didn’t do those things to build a safety net, that’s exactly what they became. 

Tell us more about your core mission and principles. 

We believe that Company is Community. We can’t grow and stay strong without partners. We aren’t just building an ice cream company—we are building a community. 

We view service as art. We can train our team on many things: how a sundae should look, the small window of time caramel has between underdone and burnt, the proper way to wear a kerchief. But going above and beyond those technical skills with our customers, and between and inside our teams, that’s how we create the world of Jeni’s ice cream. We freely give of ourselves and share our passion for what we do. We are a force for good. We want to do this the right way. We want to be proud of all of our decisions. We believe that business has the power to do well while doing good. 

What does environmental responsibility mean to you? 

Our actions today have consequences tomorrow. As we humans continually uncover the intricacies of our planet, it would be terrible to one day recognize that we have destroyed so much with so little regard only to satisfy our own hubris. 

We must be both thoughtful and radical in our approach. 

Learn more about Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at jenis.com