Twins roll out sweet business
“We all scream for ice cream” has a whole new meaning for Southern students Brandon Foligno and Benjamin Foligno. In 2021, the twins, both sophomores majoring in business administration, created their own ice cream truck called Seaside Creamery.
“We go to the beach a lot. The other ice cream trucks are always prepackaged, broken and overpriced so we came up with an idea to start our own ice cream truck and keep the prices fair,” Brandon says.
The pair started off buying their own freezer to hold the ice cream but were eventually able to partner with The Hershey Co., one of the largest chocolate manufacturers in the world, provided them with a freezer and weekly tubs of ice cream.
The creamery offers its six most popular flavors: Li’l Blue Panda, Grasshopper, Crazy Vanilla, Moose Tracks, Caramel Cookie Dough and Cookies and Cream.
Li’l Blue Panda is one of the top sellers. It consists of blue-and-white sugar cookie flavored ice cream, mixed with a blue cookie dough swirl and cream-filled chocolate cookies.
Seaside Creamery consistently has the same six flavors, and they offer additional flavors weekly.
“We try to get new flavors every week,” Benjamin says. “Hershey is really good on finding new flavors to put out there. It makes it a lot easier for us to just buy it and see how it goes.”
Seaside Creamery ice cream truck brings in the most money during the month of September. As fall comes around, so do state fairs, carnivals and back-to-school activities. The ice cream truck has attended many of these staple fall events. Attending these events and being on Southern’s campus involves getting a permit from the City of New Haven.
The brothers said that starting their ice cream truck was difficult in the beginning.
“At first it was [difficult], but once we started getting people to acknowledge us and started a fan base, it became easier because people actually started waiting for us to show up,” Benjamin says. “Now it’s a little bit easier because we got our name out there.”
When the beach-themed ice cream truck was first purchased last year, it already came with a design. The brothers, however, got artists to put their new logo onto the truck.
The brothers say they have a great connection. Benjamin describes his brother, Brandon, as being a strong worker and having a great work ethic.
“We’re twins, so it feels like he’s my other half,” Brandon says.
Benjamin and Brandon try to keep the truck running from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. depending on business.
Sometimes their aunt, Lisa Genovese, helps them serve ice cream.
“She loves being around food and serving,” Brandon says.
Genovese was also responsible for first suggesting that the brothers partner with Hershey. The Foligno family benefits by the business receiving the ice cream.
During the winter, the brothers keep their ice cream truck in a storage unit in Berlin, Conn., until spring.
In the future, the Foligno brothers hope to be able to open a storefront business.
“We did so well this summer, so we’re thinking about it,” Benjamin says. “If we could keep it going that would be cool.”
By: Hailey Roy