Wall’s ice cream

August 30, 2007 at 3:37 pm (brand, company, cornetto, factory, ice cream, magnum, products, Unilever)

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Wall’s (Ice Cream) Ltd is the name of the company that for many years, as an independent and then as a Unilever subsidiary, made and marketed the Wall’s brand of ice cream in the UK. Originally an independent British meat producer, Thomas Wall and Son Ltd reputedly considered manufacturing ice cream in 1913 to fill in the seasonal downturn in sales of meat pies and sausages in the summer months, but the advent of the First World War prevented this. Walls was acquired by Mac fisheries in 1920 and then (1922) by Lever Brothers Ltd (together with Margarine Union, the founder company of Unilever). Ice cream production commenced in 1922 at a factory in Acton, London. As ice cream grew in significance, Unilever split the company into two, T Wall and Son (Ice Cream) Ltd and T Wall and Son (Meats) Ltd, selling off the meat company in 1994. In 1959, Wall’s doubled capacity by opening a purpose built ice cream factory at Gloucester, England. In 1981 Unilever merged T Wall and Son (Ice Cream) Ltd with Birds Eye Foods Ltd to form Birds Eye Wall’s Ltd. Following a review of production facilities, the Gloucester factory was expanded and updated, and the Acton factory was closed (“Project Phoenix” 1983). Unilever continues to use the brand for ice cream in the UK.

Whilst remaining (2006) the market leader in the UK in impulse hand held products such as Cornetto and Magnum, and creative in-home products such as Viennetta, the Wall’s brand faces severe competition from the major supermarket brands and to a lesser extent from Nestle‘s ice cream and ice lollies (absorbing the Rowntree’s and Lyons Maid brands), and Mars, spin-off ice cream products.

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