Denada Makes Sugar-Free Ice Cream Look Irresistible
By: Casha Doemland
Summer is around the corner, and the hot hot heat is prepared to greet you at your front doorstep, side window, and everywhere in between. Outside of blasting the AC and jumping into a cold body of water, the only real way to cool down is to treat yourself to a tub of ice cream.
To those who can't handle sugar, pastry chef Charlotte Haygarth has got you covered with her newest line of sugar-free ice creams, Denada.
"Naturally, I loved gluten, sugar, rich foods and anything delicious," starts Haygarth. "The more and more I read, the more interested I became in what I was doing. So, I started exploring baking without sugar and the science behind how it worked."
Through her exploration, she made the executive decision to kick sugar out altogether, which meant no more carbohydrates, boozy beverages or ice cream. Yeah, after a month of being sugar-free she felt incredible, but some of the sweet treat alternatives weren't cutting it anymore.
"I frickin' love ice cream, and there was nothing on the supermarket shelves I could or would eat," starts Haygarth. "Some brands were low calorie or low sugar, but to me, they all tasted like shit. None of them came close to real ice cream. So, Denada started out as a selfish obsession so I could eat real ice cream and not feel guilty about it."
With the help of former Olympic Hockeyroo player and co-founder, Jayde Taylor, and designer Jo Cutri, Denada launched in December 2017.
“Taylor has a drive and determination I don’t think I’ll ever understand. She’s the driving force of the business,” shares Haygarth. “As for Cutri, I love his work, and the amount of thought and consideration he takes when creating an idea or concept is incredible. It was great to work alongside someone who cared about every element of the branding and packaging, not only right now, but moving forward so the brand could grow and develop seamlessly over time.”
Equipped with four classic flavors, Vanilla, Mint Chip, Peanut Butter and Double Choc, the next step for Denada and Cutri was to craft the packaging.
“We started by establishing our target market early,” states Cutri. “We knew we wanted to create something very minimal yet sophisticated. Through the design process, there was always dialogue about considerations to how the entire range looked on the shelf together, and just as individual tubs, which I think stemmed from being a new product and needing a point of difference to have an impact in the marketplace.”
Essentially, Denada wanted to be a brand that spoke more by saying less. The team heavily researched design trends, until the inspiration hit and they experimented with dozens of color combinations.
In the end, they selected Pantone colors to make the packaging look as delectable as the ice cream itself, and used the font Biko to supply a “clean, clinical style with a few unique touches to give some of the letters personality,” starts Cutri. “We are dealing with ice cream after all.”
The great challenge throughout the design process was the curation of the colors, as they didn’t want flavors to overlap in the future as more were released.
“It is very difficult to create a design using only three Pantone colors that not only compliments the ice cream flavor in the tub but also considers the legibility of all vital information and meeting all food packaging standards whilst still looking unique on the shelf,” adds Cutri.
While the ice cream has only been available in Australia for three months, Haygarth ensures us the business is evolving. In fact, the sugar-free ice cream has been a hit with the diabetic community.
“A big focus for the company is education on the effects sugar has within the diabetic community, as well as a broader community,” says Haygarth. “Seeing this has made us realize we’d like to continue to grow within the space, helping to raise money and awareness.”
With 1.7 Australians diagnosed with diabetes, it’s a noble cause.
“Denada is an all natural sugar-free ice cream company,” says Haygarth. “We don’t compromise on taste and texture – it tastes just as creamy and indulgent as the full sugar stuff – just without the guilt.”
LA-based and Georgia-bred, Casha Doemland spends her days crafting poetry and freelance writing. Over the last two years, she’s been published in a variety of publications and zines around the world. When she’s not nerding out with words, you can catch her watching a classic film, trekking around the globe or hanging out with a four-pound Pomeranian.