Monday, June 8, 2009
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
ANN ARBOR BUSiEs
Healthy competition sparks new cold war
Frozen yogurt rivals cream."
According to an article in Reu-
ice cream as summer ters last July, ice cream sales
declined 3.9 percent from 2002 to
staple 1 iA2 2007. During the same time, there
was a 7.2-percent jump in frozen
By JASMINE ZHU novelty sales - some of which can
Daily News Editor be attributed to frozen yogurt's
The competition among the eat- In an e-mail interview, Yogobliss
eries in Ann Arbor that offer frozen co-owner Mack Kim said he plans
desserts is heating up for the sum- to expand Yogobliss to include a
mer. Ice cream, the timeless staple new location on State Street.
for hot summer days, may now find "We are very interested in the
a substantial rival in its healthier Ritz Camera location, but we have
cousin - frozen yogurt. had difficulty getting in contact
According to a USA Today arti- with Ritz corporate to see if we can
cle on May 26, frozen yogurt sales lease the property," Kim wrote.
generally increase by 20 percent "Hopefully, we will be able to find
every summer. a second location soon."
LSA senior Bria Gray, an avid Joseph Ahn, the other co-owner
frozen yogurt fan, can often be of Yogobliss, said the reason they
spotted at Yogobliss - a popular want to expand is because the store
Ann Arbor store that opened in has been very successful in its cur-
April that specializes in tart frozen rent location.
yogurt. "We're doing pretty well, and we
"(Frozen yogurt) is really tasty, want to have multiple stores," Ahn
and I can justify it by telling myself said.
that it's healthy," Gray said. "I Ahn said that he believes the
think it also tastes better than ice reason for Yogobliss' success is
because frozen yogurt's popularity
appears to be a national trend.
"Nationwide, it's growing pret-
ty rapidly," Ahn said. "If you see
the trends of Pink Berry and Red
Mango (other popular shops that
specialize in frozen yogurt)... we
just want to capture some of that
Kinesiology sophomore Jenna
Spinei, a Yogobliss employee, said
frozen yogurt is a growing trend
that has just started to infiltrate the
"In the west coast, (frozen
yogurt) is really popular and in the
east coast also," Spinei said, "and
it's starting to come inwards (to the
Alyssa Krentzel, a School of
Music, Theater & Dance sophomore
and employee at the Stucchi's State
Street location, said she believes
frozen yogurt's surging popularity
is due to its healthy ingredients.
"People who are looking for
healthier alternatives go for the
frozen yogurt," Krentzel said.
At Amer's Mediterranean Deli
on State Street, there is an ample
selection of tart frozen yogurt and
premium ice cream. But Emily
Brooks, an Amer's employee and
University alum, said most cus-
tomers prefer frozen yogurt to ice
"Frozen yogurt, definitely (is a
more popular choice)," Brooks said.
"It's pretty trendy right now."
Bubble Island on South Univer-
sity is also capitalizing on the fro-
zen yogurt trend.
The local bubble tea vendor has
been offering frozen yogurt for
about three months now, accord-
ing to LSA senior Kyle Welton, a
Bubble Island employee.
"(Frozen yogurt) is catching hold
a little bit, especially since now it's
summer," Welton said.
He added that Bubble Island's
frozen yogurt sales have been
growing each week because of the
LSA freshman Matam Naamani,
a first-timer at Yogobliss, said
though he thinks that "ice cream
is pretty timeless," after trying fro-
zen yogurt, he now believes frozen
yogurt is better.
Yet Spinei thinks that ice cream
and frozen yogurt each have their
"Frozen yogurt is healthier, ice
cream is more of a treat," Spinei
Spinei believes that frozen
yogurt - although a current trend
- will never overtake ice cream in
"Ice cream is just its own catego-
ry, with its own addicts," she said.
Kevin Phelps, manager and co-
owner of the Stucchi's on State
Street and South University, said
more customers buy traditional
ice cream, adding that yearly sales
typically consist of 60 percent
ice cream and 40 percent frozen
But Ahn said he's optimistic
about frozen yogurt becoming an
all-time favorite dessert like ice
"With the way it's growing,
it certainly appears it could be a
staple," Ahn said. "I mean there's a
chance it couldbe a trend,but we're
just trying to capitalize on it. We're
hopeful that it'll become a staple."