Frequently Asked Questions

Does Kawartha Dairy offer tours?
As much fun as learning about making ice cream could be, we regret that we are unable to offer public tours of our facility due to food safety regulations.
What’s the difference between sherbet and sorbet?
While sherbet does contain a small amount of milkfat content (between 1% and 2%), sorbet does not contain any dairy ingredients.
I’d like to buy a Kawartha Dairy cone sign. Do you sell them?
Unfortunately, our cone signs and all advertising materials are provided to our wholesale customers only. We do not offer them for sale to the public.
Does Kawartha Dairy have a farm of it's own to supply it's milk?
Like virtually all Ontario-based companies producing dairy products, we get all our fresh milk and cream through the Dairy Farmers of Ontario, a cooperative owned by Ontario’s dairy farmers. The milk that arrives at our location in Bobcaygeon typically comes from the same area farms, many of whom have been supplying us for decades. Almost 90% of the milk we use comes from farms located less than 100kms from our Bobcaygeon location, something we’re really proud of.
What are stabilizers and why are they included in ice cream?
Stabilizers are essential in ice cream to:

  • Create smoothness in body and texture
  • Limit ice crystal growth during storage
  • Prevent product shrinkage over time during storage

The following stabilizers are used by Kawartha Dairy and other ice cream companies in their products:

  • Mono and Diglycerides (derived from soybeans)
  • Locust Bean Gum (derived from the locust bean plant)
  • Cellulose Gum or Methyl Cellulose Gum (derived from wood fibre)
  • Guar Gum (derived from the guar plant)
  • Carrageenan (derived from seaweed)
My milk went sour before the “best before” date. Why?
The “best before” date refers to the projected shelf life of an unopened container of milk which has been stored at the proper temperature. Kawartha Dairy recommends storing milk at 2° C (35.6° F). Once a bag or carton of milk has been opened, it is vulnerable to environmental factors and the “best before” date is no longer valid. Continued temperature control is vital at all stages of your milk’s trip from the dairy to the store, to storage at the store, on the way home to your fridge and to storage in your own home. If at any stage the milk is allowed to be stored for prolonged periods at temperatures exceeding 4° C (39.2° F), shelf life will be affected and premature spoilage may result. In fact, the shelf life of milk is shortened by a full 50% for every 5° F (3° C) rise in temperature over the ideal 2 ° C (35.6° F) temperature.

You can help keep your milk fresh by doing the following:

  • Keep the milk cold!
  • Sunlight will change the taste of your milk. Avoid contact with sunlight.
  • Keep the containers out just long enough to serve, then return your milk to the fridge immediately.
  • Rotate your milk; use older milk first.
  • Leave milk in its original container to safeguard its flavour and food value.
  • Store milk away from strong smelling foods to prevent a transfer of odour and taste.
What is the right temperature at which to store milk?
Milk should be stored at or below 2° C to ensure it stays fresh for as long as possible. Storage above this temperature will drastically reduce the shelf life of the milk. If you leave milk on the counter for 1 hour, it loses as much freshness as it does one day in the refrigerator.
My child has nut allergies. Is Kawartha Dairy ice cream nut free?
All of our ice cream comes from our one production facility which produces products containing nuts as well as those which do not. We make many flavours that do not contain nuts, but we cannot 100% guarantee an absolutely nut-free status of any product. Although we take extreme care to clean and sanitize our plant between batches and at the end of the day, there always is a possibility that non-nut flavours can come in contact with nuts. We therefore cannot make any “nut free” claims for any of our ice cream products.
Is chocolate milk a healthy choice for kids?
Yes. Chocolate milk is as nutritious as white milk. Kawartha Dairy’s is made with 2% milk and contains about the same amount of sugar as you would find in most unsweetened fruit juices. Chocolate milk’s ideal combination of proteins and carbohydrates make it an excellent choice to replace lost fluids after physical activity.
Do you sell ice cream cakes?
Yes we do. All of our Kawartha Dairy stores EXCEPT Lindsay have them available. The cakes are solid ice cream with icing on the top and lettering is available. For more information, contact the store closest to you…the numbers are in the “Our Stores” section of the website.
Where can I buy your products in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)? What about other parts of the province?
Kawartha Dairy’s main distribution area is Central Ontario, where our milk, cream and ice cream products are available in many retail and foodservice locations. In the GTA, our ice cream is available by the scoop and in take home 1.5L packages at a number of outlets. Our other dairy products, such as milk and cream, are not widely available in the GTA but can be found in a small number of locations.

Across the rest of the province, Kawartha Dairy ice cream can be found at a wide variety of locations either by the scoop or take home 1.5L and 500ml containers. Our milk and cream products can also found at a number of retailers in the Greater London and SW Ontario area.

Check the “Other Places to Buy Kawartha Dairy Ice Cream” page of our website for a list of major retailers carrying our ice cream in most of their locations.

Does Kawartha Dairy sell franchises?
Kawartha Dairy is a 100% family owned company, which includes the stores. Unfortunately, franchises are not available.
Can I buy a scooping tub of your ice cream?
You can buy a tub of our ice cream by contacting one of our stores and placing a special order. Locations of our stores and phone numbers are in the “Our Stores” section of the website.
I’m having a special event (or wedding reception etc). Does Kawartha Dairy have a service where they can come and provide ice cream by the scoop or set up an ice cream sundae station?
Unfortunately, Kawartha Dairy does not provide that service. We do, however, take special orders and can provide you with the flavours and sizes of ice cream that you need for your special event. Just give us one week’s notice to ensure that we have the flavour and sizes in stock that you are looking for.
Are Kawartha Dairy products certified kosher?

The following Kawartha Dairy brand products are certified kosher:

  • Milk
  • Ice Cream
  • Sherbet
  • Frozen Yogurt
  • Butter

The following Kawartha Dairy brand products are NOT kosher:

  • Cream
  • Eggs
Does your ice cream contain alcohol or animal products besides milk?
Kawartha Dairy ice cream contains trace amounts of food-grade alcohol (less than 0.1% of the total recipe) which is found in artificial vanilla flavouring and is which is used in most of our ice cream flavours. This is within the acceptable level of Halal dietary standards. There are also NO animal products (besides cow’s milk) used in Kawartha Dairy ice cream.
What are “modified milk ingredients”?
Though the term “modified milk ingredients” (MMI’s) may sound slightly mysterious, MMI’s are actually just Canadian dairy products that have been dried for use as ingredients in other food products. In terms of the ingredients we use, MMI’s refer to whey powder (a by-product of cheesemaking after the curds have been strained). Combined with fresh milk and cream (the first two ingredients for all of our flavours) this dairy powder is used in our ice cream to help create a smooth, creamy texture and also contribute to maintaining product quality during frozen storage. The MMI that Kawartha Dairy uses is made from Canadian milk.
Do Kawartha Dairy products contain any growth hormones or antibiotics?
Kawartha Dairy’s products do not contain any Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH). Unlike the U.S., the use of BGH is illegal in Canada.

Dairy cattle may be given antibiotics due to sickness. While they are receiving antibiotics and for a regulated period afterward, their milk is not collected for human consumption. All milk collected from dairy farms is tested for the presence of antibiotics and if it is detected, the entire shipment of milk is rejected. The farm where the antibiotics originated is then suspended from shipping milk until the situation is investigated and resolved.

What do the cows that supply your milk and cream eat?
Dairy cows must eat a balanced diet of a variety of food, for both their health and to enable them to produce great tasting, high quality milk. In Ontario, this means that dairy cows typically eat a mix of hay (which is dried grass and legumes, such as alfalfa), grain, fresh grass, and silage, which is corn that has been stored in a silo where it ferments and turns it into a form that cows love and can digest easily.
Can Kawartha Dairy provide a donation for my organization / group / team / club / charity?

Every year we receive hundreds of requests for donations. Because of the volume of requests, we cannot lend support to them all, but do consider each request. Kawartha Dairy’s Charitable Giving Mission is to provide product and financial support for charitable causes that support agriculture, food insecurity, children’s charities, and local community events.

If you are interested in a donation for your charitable organization or event, and feel it aligns with the Kawartha Dairy Charitable Giving Mission, please visit our Donations page for more details and to submit your request.

Does Kawartha Dairy offer any products that are made without dairy?
Yes – our sorbet flavours are made without dairy and can be found at all our Kawartha Dairy locations and selected ice cream shops. Our sorbets are sold by the scoop and are not available in prepackaged tubs at this time.
Does Kawartha Dairy offer any lactose free products?
Yes – we are proud to offer 2 lactose free ice cream flavours, which can be found at our Kawartha Dairy locations and select ice cream shops. Our lactose free flavours are sold by the scoop and are not available in prepackaged tubs at this time.
Is Kawartha Dairy ice cream gluten free?

Great question, and at the moment, one that needs a bit of explanation.

Many of our flavours do not contain any gluten containing ingredients, and never have, but since all our products are made in the same facility, we have not been able to make any gluten free claims in the past. However, after the introduction of a number of changes to our production methods and protocols, we are proud to share the news that we are in the midst of introducing a number of packaged 1.5L flavours that are labelled gluten free. More and more of these flavours, which include a “Gluten Free” badge on the package, are appearing on store shelves every day. It is important to note that we will NOT be labelling any of our scooped ice cream products as gluten free – not because they are any different in terms of ingredients and production methods than our packaged ice cream, but because of the risk of cross contamination in an ice cream shop environment.

For more information on our evolving offering of packaged gluten free flavours, or to learn more about our internal processes making this possible, contact us at