Frostline, corn-based imitation ice cream that Virginia dairymen wanted to freeze out of the market, won a three-year battle Tuesday when the state Board of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs approved new regulations that will allow the product to be sold in the state.
The board's unanimous decision reversed its ruling of a year ago that rejected rule changes that would have exempted Frostline from costly dairy regulations requiring pasteurization.
The new decision follows a September ruling in Richmond Circuit Court overtuning last year's board decision and remaining it for reconsideration. Circuit Court Judge William Spain wrote in his opinion that the board had acted under the undue influence of the dairy industry, with which Frostline, already approved in more than a score of other states, will compete.
?We're happy, obviously," said William B. Tent Jr., general counsel of the Grain Processing of Corp. of Muscatine, Iowa, Frostline's marker, who said the powdered mix, which can be made into both artificial milkshades and imitation ice cream, might be on sale in Virginia restaurants by next spring.
"Anytime you talk to a dairy farmer he will prefer that you buy a dairy product," said John L. Miller of the Virginia Dairymen's Association which last year oppossed Frostline, but this week dropped its opposition. "But we were realistic...The consumer is still going to buy good dairy products."
Retailers who serve Frostline, which a company brochure says is 30 cents a gallon cheaper than soft ice cream made with milk, must posta sign telling customers, that it's artificial, under the board's new rules.