Acme’s salmon ice cream leads this year's seafood-themed April Fools' jokes
What started out as an April Fool’s Day joke for executives at Acme Smoked Fish turned into a real product – and one that garnered a boatload of attention for the company on social media.
Executives at the Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A.-based supplier discussed a prank that would involve saying the company is launching Salmon Candy Ice Cream in retailers nationwide.
Then, when they got together with the research and development team to create a photo of the ice cream for the company’s social media accounts, Holly Leung, who works on Acme’s research and development team, said, “We should make it. I think it would actually taste good,” Acme Senior Digital Marketing Director Stephanie Zucker told SeafoodSource.
Acme’s Smoked Salmon Candy is one of its most popular products, Zucker noted. So they pressed on, and the research and development team made two versions: one with a vanilla ice cream base and one made with oat milk.
“Everyone at the company who tried it, really liked it … the sweet/salty combination works beautifully,” Zucker said.
When Acme executives posted a photo of the ice cream on its social media accounts earlier this week, promising the opportunity for customers to try the ice cream at the company’s Brooklyn warehouse’s “Fish Fridays” event, “we got so much engagement and interest that we decided to make it and actually hand out samples.”
Acme’s social media followers were polarized – some saying they were excited about trying the ice cream and others disgusted by the notion.
However, when they handed out samples on Friday, 1 April, the ice cream was a “huge success,” Zucker noted.
“Everyone was not only pleasantly surprised (myself included) but also loved it,” he said.
While Acme has no plans for a nationwide launch, it may hand out samples again at its Brooklyn store in the future.
Acme was not the only seafood supplier to get in on the April fool’s Day fun.
Portland, Maine, U.S.A.-based Bristol Seafood said in a press release that it launched a line of seafood-based plant products “to solve a common request: Americans have fallen in love with eating foods that appear to be something different.”
The flagship of the new product line is Bristol’s “Beyond Beet,” which is codfish pressed into the shape of a beet and dyed red. Other products will include scallops molded into the shape of potatoes and carrots that are just strips of Atlantic salmon, the supplier noted.
“We understand that plant-based beef, chicken, and seafood is an up-and-coming category following alternative ‘milks,’ zucchini ‘noodles,’ and cauliflower ‘rice.’ We decided to turn the concept on its head and produce a seafood-based plant just to see what would happen,” Bristol Vice President of Marketing and Retail Irene Moon said.
“The alternative foods space is “attracting a significant amount of outside capital,” Bristol President & CEO Peter Handy said. “As we see it, if we’re the first company to do a seafood-based plant, we’ll be able to raise a lot of money from investors who have demonstrated a willingness to see past old-fashioned metrics like ‘revenue’ and ‘earnings.’”
Bristol executives were “originally concerned about whether we would be permitted to bring Beyond Beet to Vegetable Expo North America (VENA) given it is a plant-alternative,” Bristol Vice President of Sales Mike Lodato said.
“Following a short discussion, show organizers indicated we are welcome to exhibit, as none of the current exhibitors view us as a credible threat to their business,” Lodato added.
In a humorous but legitimate 1 April announcement, seafood restaurant chain Long John Silver’s launched Swashbockler, the company's first beverage alcohol refreshment, to celebrate the end of Lenten season.
The malty bock beer is brewed with Long John Silver’s signature malt vinegar, the company said in a press release.
“The origins of bock beer, and its significance to the Lenten season, date back to the Middle Ages when 17th century German monks engaged in fasts for the whole 40 days of Lent,” Long John Silver’s said. "No boiled crawfish, eggs, fruits, vegetables – they ate nothing. But how did they survive? By imbibing large quantities of a filling, calorie-rich beer that became known as bock beer.”
Photo courtesy of Acme Smoked Fish