Second Scoop: Truth in ice cream advertising

Posted by Turkey Hill Team on November 13th, 2013


It’s true that food stylists – those who arranged and photograph food for those tempting photos you see in ads and in restaurants – sometimes create ingenious concoctions to stand in for the real thing under the hot lights of the studio.

Mashed potatoes are sometimes substituted for ice cream. So are recipes involving shortening and confectioners sugar. But when it comes to photos used in advertising, the Federal Trade Commission has deemed that real ice cream must be used in ice cream ads. However, if the ads are for the cone or a hot fudge topping, a phony ice cream can be used.

Food stylists also carry an impressive collection of tools to help them achieve the “perfect look” for the treat they’re photographing. “What is almost always on set are dental tools, tweezers, paint brushes, cosmetic wedges, q-tips, tacky wax, wooden skewers, rubbing alcohol, oil, and adhesives,” explains food stylist Kim Krejca.

So what’s being used in the photo below: Real ice cream or an imposter? We’re not sure, but it definitely looks good!


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50 Responses to “Second Scoop: Truth in ice cream advertising”

  1. MC says:

    Lets go REAL!

  2. Jim in SOMD says:

    I agree it looks real and good enough to eat right now. I would think that they would take photos of ice cream in freezer so they could take their time, even with the heat of the lighting for the pictures. Maybe the chill would make them work a little more quickly too.

  3. Bobi says:

    Yep, looks good!

  4. the cone looks so good. so it mashed potatoes

  5. Amber S. says:

    Looks good to me!

  6. Anita says:

    Doesn’t look real. Looks more like a fabric although the enlargement just might make all this deceptive. Also, there is not even one little bit dripping down the side. Hope you will tell us what it is.

  7. RonF says:

    It looks like Italian water ice

  8. LindaR says:

    Why even bother using fake substitue ingredients? With computers, graphic arts & photo shops, advertisers can make anything to look the way they want. Sometimes you just can’t “believe” your own eyes! If it looks to good to be true, it probaly isn’t.

  9. Elsie Nicolette says:

    The way the ice cream hangs over the cone does not seem like a real scenario–at least not in my experience!

  10. Sally says:

    I don’t think the ice cream looks real.

  11. Betty says:

    real ice cream

  12. Norma says:

    Turkey Hill is always the real deal. Veggies in an ice cream cone, I don’t know.

  13. Juliette says:

    Nope, not real ! Has a glassy look, and the scoops aren’t the least smeared. I’m glad you divulged the secret though! Give me the real Turkey Hill any time. In fact, just came back with 2 , Butter Pecan and Orange Swirl ! LATER !

  14. Joan says:

    Doesn’t look real to me. Turkey Hill would be slightly melty and delicious looking. This picture is not. Thanks for asking.

  15. gianna says:

    Not real…texture’s off!

  16. Harriet G says:

    It looks too good to be real ice cream.

  17. Ellen says:

    It sure looks like REAL ICE CREAM in the cone to me.

  18. Lou says:

    I think the photo above is using an imposter.

  19. Andrea says:

    This doesn’t look like real ice cream. The edges look like they used mashed potatoes. Some of this fake food is truly a work of art!

  20. Mary says:

    It looks almost too perfect to be real ice cream. I think it’s a faker!

  21. marie grim says:

    it kinda looks like real ice cream.. but there is something alittle off about it

  22. Vicki Spokes says:

    Not real

  23. Caroline of Manalapan says:

    I will go real since the ice cream is not smooth.

  24. I doesn’t look real, but looks delicious.

  25. Lydia says:

    does not look real but its Turkey Hill so it is

  26. Marie says:

    I don’t really think it is real. I would venture further that it is NOT Turkey Hill.

  27. Robin Ames says:

    Does not look appetizing to me. Too small, too perfect… I want a big, gooey mess!

  28. Diana Beatty says:

    It looks real but, not sure that’s okay because Turkey Hill is the best any way you look at it.

  29. Bob Kessler Jr says:

    It looks too perfect to be real. Mine never look like this picture.

  30. Ida Beek says:

    I say it’s real…

  31. mary ann herrmann says:

    …real turkey hill, hopefully!!

  32. grams says:

    I hate to say it, but it looks like potatoes to me. Under the lights I would imagine it would start melting and there are no drips on the cone. Sorry.

  33. Linda says:

    Looks to perfect to be real

  34. Ron says:

    It looks as good as the scoops on the Turkey Hill blog header (only smaller) so they must be real! or are they?

  35. Jan says:

    It looks fake to me also, no drips. I know that mine drips even in the cold weather. So…but I eat only the real stuff! LOL

  36. Elaine says:

    OK, I am going with real

  37. leecarr says:

    it does not look real to me because there are no drips, I always get drips when I get cones

  38. jay says:

    Looks to good to be true.

  39. CHRISTINE says:


  40. bobby kelly says:

    If it’s Turkey Hill, its got to be good!!!!

  41. Linda T says:

    Since Turkey Hill is both honest and makes a great ice cream, why would I look anywhere else? Just go for Turkey Hill and you’ll ALWAYS be in good company.

  42. Marion says:

    I don’t think it is the real thing!

  43. Ann King says:

    It looks very appetizing but it is not melting so unless it was photographed in a freezer, it is probably mashed potatoes.

  44. Sarah says:

    Since it’s in a cone it must not be real ice cream. Now if there were some drips on the side I might think it is real.

  45. Marie says:

    All I can say is WOW,,,your “natural” ice cream is out of the park!!!!! I went back to my freezer to get seconds, which is totally out of the norm for me. It is the best natural ice cream I’ve ever had …from a store.
    Thank you,

  46. Nancy N. says:

    True, with all the digital photography the ice cream seems real but looks like it could be styrofoam to me! If it is your TH, they should show flavors unique to you! I’m an icecreamaholic so I think I’m right!

  47. Edie says:

    The texture dosn’t look real,but if it is someone better eat it fast as it will slip off the cone soon.

  48. Lois Sidelnick says:

    Not real in my book, Not runny enough down the side of the cone to be real. Don’t fool us with fake turkey hill. Especially butter pecan, the best ever.

  49. sandi mojzuk says:

    It looks fake… not creamy

  50. I guess I am the only one who knows if it’s real or not. Well, I can only say that it is not mashed potatoes :) And thanks for the acclaims.
    Since the photographer name have forgotten, I am posting this message and for more photos, please visit

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