Skip to Main Content (Press Enter) Toggle side nav
Ice Cream Social by Brad Edmondson

Ice Cream Social

Best Seller
Ice Cream Social by Brad Edmondson
Paperback $18.95
Jan 06, 2014 | ISBN 9781609948139

Also available from:

  • Jan 06, 2014 | ISBN 9781609948139

    Also available from:

*This title is not eligible for purchase to earn points nor for redemption with your code in the Reader Rewards program

Product Details


“In 2011, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center gave Ben & Jerry’s one of its highest honors. This book explains why.”
—Martin Luther King III, human rights activist

“As this fine telling of the Ben & Jerry’s story indicates, it’s harder than it looks to integrate consumer capitalism and political integrity. There are lessons here: hard ones and of course some sweet ones.”
—Bill McKibben, author of Oil and Honey: The Education of an Unlikely Activist

“The founders of Ben & Jerry’s put up a long and determined fight to keep their dream of a socially responsible company intact. Cutthroat capitalism doesn’t make it easy for entrepreneurs who want living wages for their employees, environmentally sustainable ingredients, and socially beneficial business practices. Brad Edmondson gives us a fascinating look behind the scenes of a company as beloved as the ice cream it makes.”
—Barbara Ehrenreich, New York Times bestselling author and Founding Editor, Economic Hardship Reporting Project

“The pioneering experience of Ben & Jerry’s shows that corporate social responsibility can, thankfully, be contagious. Brad Edmondson takes us behind the scenes to tell this riveting and timely story.”
—United States Senator Patrick Leahy

“This book reveals the true ingredients that go into every pint of Ben & Jerry’s: GMO-free cream, fair-trade cane sugar, and a lot of blood, sweat, and tears.”
—Eric Utne, founder, Utne Reader

“What once was radical is becoming mainstream. By earning B Corp certification, Ben & Jerry’s has proven that you can sell without selling out and scale with integrity. Much of the global movement to redefine success in business stands on its shoulders, and much of what we know about better practices and better governance can be traced to lessons the company learned the hard way. Finally, this important story has been well and completely told.”
—Jay Coen Gilbert, cofounder, B Lab

“Brad Edmondson vividly conveys the passion, conflicts, and raw humanity behind an iconic brand. He gives us an uncensored look at how smart, caring people poured their hearts and souls into making Ben & Jerry’s the standard-bearer for ‘caring capitalism.’ The story leaves the reader in awe of all they achieved, and it also imparts invaluable lessons by talking frankly about their failures. It puts on full display the contradictions and painful choices that eventually confront all successful mission-driven businesses. It’s a journey into uncharted territory.”
—Rink Dickinson, cofounder and copresident, and Rob Everts, copresident, Equal Exchange

Ice Cream Social is a factory tour of the ups and downs and arounds of Ben & Jerry’s. We get an insider’s description of the struggle of two guys who strived through good times and bad to achieve their mission to make the world’s best ice cream, pursue social change, and treat both employees and shareholders fairly. Much of the time, they succeeded.”
—Madeleine M. Kunin, former governor of Vermont

“St. Albans Cooperative has been a proud partner of Ben & Jerry’s since the beginning. Through all of its organizational changes, it has remained committed to its core values, family dairy farms, and the cooperative. I am proud to be part of this story.”
—Ralph McNall, dairy farmer, St. Albans Cooperative Creamery

“When Calvert first heard about Ben & Jerry’s, we wondered whether our mission of social investing could even include a company that sold ice cream treats. This book shows how the founders convinced us. For decades, they have been a stellar example of walking the talk.”
—Wayne Silby, Founding Chair, Calvert Funds, and cofounder, Social Venture Network

“A fascinating business morality tale . . . Edmondson offers an entertaining and enlightening account of the highs and lows that can be encountered in the quest to give capitalism a soul.”
—Lynn A. Stout, Distinguished Professor of Corporate & Business Law, Cornell University Law School

Table Of Contents

Foreword by Annie Leonard
Main Characters
Chapter One: “We’re Completely Insane, And We Need Your Help!”

Chapter Two: A New Kind Of Startup
Chapter Three: Progressive Sweatshop

Chapter Four: Staffing The Social Mission
Chapter Five: Money Starts Talking
Chapter Six: Yo, I’m Not Your CEO

Chapter Seven: The Gulf Was So Wide
Chapter Eight: Leading With Progressive Values
Chapter Nine: Unacceptable Choices
Chapter Ten: The Sale Agreements

Chapter Eleven: A Thousand Cuts
Chapter Twelve: Counterattack
Chapter Thirteen: Pursuing Linked Prosperity
Epilogue By Jeff Furman
Reflection by Anuradha Mittal
Sources and Further Reading
About the Author

Looking for More Great Reads?
21 Books You’ve Been Meaning to Read
Get the latest updates from Brad Edmondson
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
By clicking SIGN UP, I acknowledge that I have read and agree to Penguin Random House’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
Something awesome is on its way.
Back to Top