DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Six months of waiting are finally over, as Blue Bell Ice Cream fans are welcoming the delicious treat back to North Texas store shelves on Monday. The ice cream is now available in five flavors: Buttered Pecan, Homemade Vanilla, Dutch Chocolate, The Great Divide and Cookies ‘n Cream.READ MORE: Nineteen-Year-Old Andrew Lopez Jr. Killed In Saturday Afternoon Car Crash
Trucks carrying Blue Bell Ice Cream products started arriving at more than 2,700 stores throughout DFW before 4:00 a.m. on Monday morning.
Stores have been counting down the days until the products would be restocked. The DFW area has been without Blue Bell Ice Cream since the company halted production back in April due to a deadly listeria outbreak. CBS News spoke with former Blue Bell production workers who detailed unsanitary conditions in the facility, such as ice cream pooling on the floors.
The company had to make several changes to its production facility, and said that workers no longer feel that cleanliness is an issue. Products are also now required to pass a safety test before they are shipped out. “Give us a shot,” said John Garner, Blue Bell’s sales manager in Dallas. “We think we’ve done a great job of coming back. We just want you to give us a chance.”READ MORE: FBI Dallas Offers $5,000 Reward In Sabotage Of Communications Towers
“I think the most important thing for them was to not have any issues with it whatsoever,” said Blue Bell fan Amanda Harvey on Monday morning. “That’s why we waited so long to get it back — to make sure there won’t be any problems.”
The products hitting shelves now are being produced at either the Oklahoma or Alabama plants. There is still no timetable for when other plants will open, or when more flavors will be re-introduced to the market.
Other locations — Houston, Austin and the company’s hometown of Brenham — received Blue Bell Ice Cream two months ago. North Texas, Waco and Oklahoma are part of the second phase of their rollout plan, and customers are thrilled. Sales point to Blue Bell Ice Cream being the top brand at both Albertsons and Kroger stores.
“That’s pretty much the only ice cream that I ever really eat,” added Blue Bell fan Katherine Morgan.MORE NEWS: Stimulus Check Latest: Will You Be Receiving A Plus-Up Payment?
“Excited to be here, and grateful,” added Blue Bell Ice Cream delivery truck driver Edward Washington. He has been doing the job for 17 years and is happy to be back on DFW roads. “Thanks to all our customers.”