8 Ways to Explore the Ben & Jerry’s Factory in Waterbury, Vermont

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Started in 1978 in a renovated gas station in Burlington, Vermont, Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream has become one of the most popular ice cream brands in the world, now with over 500 Scoop Shops worldwide (more than 200 in the United States alone!) and almost 100 varieties of ice cream.

Ben and Jerry’s has three factories which produce their famous ice cream: two in Vermont (Waterbury and St. Albine’s) which distribute ice cream throughout the United States, and one factory in Hellendoorn in Holland, which distributes ice cream throughout Europe. The first factory opened in Waterbury in 1985 and guided tours began in 1986. The Waterbury Factory, the only factory open to the public, produces 300,000-400,000 pints a day and welcomes close to a quarter million people each year (up to 800 people on a busy summer day!). Even cooler?  Every employee is allowed to take home 3 pints a DAY! 

Ben & Jerry's sign

Travel Tips:

  • Tours are offered Tuesday through Saturday, every 15 minutes- see updated information on hours and fees here. Tours are handicap accessible.
  • We strongly recommend booking a tour ahead of time (they do frequently sell out!) and getting to the factory about 30 minutes beforehand to grab an ice cream from the Scoop Shop to enjoy while exploring the Graveyard and playground and then head to your tour. 
  • There is plenty of free parking to the left of the factory. There are picnic tables and places to sit and picnic outside of the factory.
  • Restrooms are located in a separate building in front of the factory.
  • There is a gift shop located near the factory tour entrance, which sells a wide variety of apparel and souvenirs.
  • Kids will want to spend time at the playground located up the (small) hill from the parking lot and in front of the Graveyard.
  • Plan on 30 minutes for the tour and another 30 minutes to explore the Graveyard, playground, and gift shop.

8 Ways to Explore the Ben & Jerry’s Factory:

  1. Guess the top ten most popular flavors of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.
  2. Check out the six 5,500 gallon tanks of  base mix for the ice cream.
  3. Start the factory tour in the Moo-vie Theater with a seven minute video about the history of the company throughout the decades. 
  4. Peer down onto the production floor and learn the ten steps to making ice cream, including blending, pasteurizing, homogenizing, flavoring, freeing, stamping, bundling, and palletizing.  
  1. Sample a special flavor of ice cream in the Flavor Lab, which was the original Test Kitchen. On the day we visited, it was Churray for Churros. 
  2. Get a special treat from the Scoop Shop, which has several Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavors and specials like milkshakes and sundaes. 
  3. Shop in the retail shop, which has a wide variety of themed apparel and gifts. 
  4. Walk the Graveyard of Flavors and see the “graves” of flavors that were once in production. The graveyard is located up the hill to the left of the factory (behind the parking lot). 

Looking for other nearby fun? Check out our posts featuring the Vermont Teddy Bear Company, the ECHO Leahy Center, the Vermont State House, our full Burlington City Guide and our feature of the Smugglers’ Notch Resort. And follow along on our adventures on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter.

Ben and Jerry's photo opt at the Waterbury VT factory

Disclaimer: We were given a media pass for the factory tour; all opinions expressed are my own.

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  1. The numbers are amazing – the amount made and sold each day, the amount given to each employee each day, I’d love to know the flavors on the graveyard. It’s a must stop next time we go to Vermont.👍

  2. I’ve been researching a road trip to Vermount from Canada and I read about Ben and Jerry’sl Good to know that it’s best to book a tour, as I saw this in my resort and I want to do it. Thanks for the heads up!

  3. Love the flavor graveyard – what a neat idea. The Ben and Jerry’s factory tour sounds like such a fun place to explore -especially with the kiddos! I had no idea that you could take a tour. I would love to if I ever find myself in Vermont one day!

  4. This looks soooo fun! Lol I love that they have a graveyard with ex-flavours! Also 5,500 gallon tanks!? I guess it makes sense that they mix it in large quantities but woooah!

  5. We could not possibly turn down chance to do a tour of the Ben & Jerry’s Factory in Waterbury. And would plan to book in advance since I would not have expected the tours to sell out. Would be interesting to try both the new flavours and see the ones that are no longer available. Good thing chocolate and caramel never go out of taste.

  6. I’ve always wanted to do this! Seems like such a cool experience and you’ve definitely persuaded me! Sending this to my husband for a getaway hint haha

  7. This tour looks so fun! My husband went as a kid, but I have yet to go. We hope to make a trip to Vermont soon, and the Ben & Jerry’s Factory will be on the itinerary.

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