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Ice Cream for All: Ben & Jerry’s Co-Founder Revives Bernie Pints

Hailey Waller

(Bloomberg) -- It’s ice cream meant to capture the essence of Bernie Sanders: hot cinnamon flavor with a butter toffee “backbone” down the middle and a chocolate disk on top.

Sanders’s official campaign website prompts visitors to sign their name, zip code, phone number and email for the chance at winning a pint. “Bernie’s Back,” as it’s called, tastes like an atomic fireball, says Ben & Jerry’s co-founder Ben Cohen, the man behind the new, limited-edition batch through his “Ben’s Best” label. It’s not available in stores.

The cinnamon “is our political revolution holding politicians’ feet to the fire.” The butter crunch represents Sanders’s “unyielding devotion to a democracy that works for everyone,” said Cohen. The backbone represents, well, a backbone.

It’s not the first Bernie-flavored ice cream. Cohen, 68, introduced “Bernie’s Yearning,” plain mint ice cream with a solid chocolate disk on top, in 2016 when Sanders ran his first campaign for the White House.

Printed on the carton at the time: “The chocolate disk represents the huge majority of economic gains that have gone to the top 1% since the end of the recession. Beneath it, the rest of us.”

According to Cohen, it won’t be his last flavor either.

Before Bernie, Vermont was well-known for the ice-cream company Cohen founded with childhood friend Jerry Greenfield. And the Vermont senator is far from the first celebrity to be reimagined in cream, milk and sugar by Ben & Jerry’s.

Through its commercial arm, part of Unilever Plc since 2000, Ben & Jerry’s has also paid tribute to actors Will Ferrell and Tina Fey -- or her “30 Rock” incarnation, comedy writer Liz Lemon -- along with late-night host Stephen Colbert and the jam band Phish. Not to mention, of course, the Grateful Dead frontman tribute flavor, Cherry Garcia.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hailey Waller in New York at hwaller@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: James Ludden at jludden@bloomberg.net, Virginia Van Natta, Ros Krasny

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