Why Gelato and FrappShakes Are the Ideal Revenue Booster for Your Business


With summers getting longer and hotter, gelato and FrappShakes are an enticing option for chocolatiers looking to generate extra revenue and extend their client base.

We all enjoy an ice cream at the seaside, but as well as families and holidaymakers purchasing gelato, it’s the millennials driving sales of gelato and frappés ever higher nationwide; as they favour stylish, luxury treats and have greater purchasing power. They are seeking experiential moments in food; and it’s important that those foods look great shared online. The European trend of eating a main course in one restaurant and dessert at a different venue is also growing in the UK. All this means that serving gelato and frappés can have serious money-making potential, and what’s more, doing so requires only minimum staffing and can slot easily into an existing chocolate business.


As a business specialising in supplying chocolate to chocolatiers, Keylink’s own interest in the potentials of gelato was piqued when Callebaut launched their ChocoGelato™ range in 2018. Traditionally, ice cream and gelato makers have struggled to create a satisfyingly chocolatey gelato, due to the cocoa butter in chocolate making the process of using it in ice cream challenging, and so necessitating the use of cocoa powder to achieve the chocolate flavour. After years of experimenting, Callebaut succeeded in producing complete gelato bases containing actual Belgian chocolate – typically 60%. In this, we saw an exciting prospect for our chocolatier customers, and when we launched the Callebaut range at the 2018 Ice Cream Expo in Harrogate, the faces of those tasting told us all we needed to know – we didn’t receive a single negative comment!

In tandem with ChocoGelato™, Callebaut also developed ChocoBase™, complete bases containing less chocolate but – and here’s where we believe lies the creative opportunity for chocolatiers – they are designed to be compatible with your chocolate of choice. Which means that for your regular customers who return to you again and again because they love your house chocolate, you can extend that offering into gelato form. For those new customers who find and love you through your gelato, offering them the same flavour in chocolate form is the logical next step.

If you wish to serve flavours other than chocolate, the world is your [wafer] oyster. Customers visiting us at Keylink to learn more about gelato have requested everything from high quality strawberry, rum and raisin and triple caramel flavours to black sesame and yuzu, matcha, and lime and cactus (we’re particularly proud of that one!) You can make your gelato offering as simple or as innovative as you please.

And then there’s how to satisfy what is currently the fastest growing market sector in food; the number of vegans in the UK has grown by 300% in the last decade, so again, this is an increasingly lucrative market to tap into. Rather than the obligatory token sorbet, you can offer refreshing and creamy-tasting vegan gelato made with bases from Essenza. Clean label, Essenza’s products are made with vegetal fibres and proteins from the fruit pulp of the baobab tree, which give the gelato its structure and creaminess. Four of the ChocoGelato base mixes are suitable for vegans, too, and make rich and intense chocolate gelato.

Having started this article with the word, ‘revenue’, you are likely to be wondering about ROI. To offer gelato in soft-serve form, you can purchase the compact and, dare we say it, rather good-looking IS-cream soft-serve gelato machine from Keylink at £3,700 (ex VAT). Requiring only a little bit of counter space, the machine is simple to use and we will also provide both recipes and point of sale flavour cards to slot in. We believe you should easily be able to repay this investment within 2-3 months.



And FrappShakes? Well, for a start, what is a FrappShake? Industry leaders indicate that the frappé market has doubled in the last three years and has an expected growth of 25% in the next three. A FrappShake is somewhere between an ice-blended frappé and the ever-popular super-thick milkshake. They are a delicious and refreshing treat that, again, hold huge appeal for the younger market, who often pick up drinks and snacks on the go, or who consume them socially, as some lifestyle trends move increasingly away from social settings where alcohol is served. Flavour options are again unlimited, from rich chocolate to mango and passionfruit.

The compact single and double flavour FrappShake machines cost £850 and £1,450 (ex VAT) respectively, and you should be able to easily repay this investment within 1-2 months.


With the gelato and iced drinks markets only looking set to grow in coming years, and the popularity of these products all year round, not just in the warmer months (Scotland has a thriving ice cream market, for example!), adding such revenue streams to your existing chocolate business is an appealing option.

Take a look at the gelato tab on our website, above, to see the full range of products available for making, decorating and serving gelato and FrappShakes. If you have questions on how to get started, we’re here to answer them, and if you want to see the products in action, you’re welcome to book in and visit us for a tailored demonstration.

For more information on how to get started serving gelato or FrappShakes, call the Keylink team on 0114 245 5400, email sales@keylink.org, or visit our website: www.keylink.org