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Rita's Water Ice Stops Serving Custard Due To Bird Flu-induced Egg Shortage

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The motto for Rita's Water Ice is "Ice -- Custard -- Happiness" but one of those things is missing.

Rita's cannot produce their famous custard because of an egg shortage.

The chain's stores will no longer be offering custard due to the national egg shortage stemming from the avian flu outbreak.

The company relies on eggs as a key ingredient in the custard.

CEO of Rita's, Jeff Moody says, "Their supplier of eggs stopped making the egg yolk product that we use for the ingredient in our custard, so it was not available in any price."

Emani Tart, of Northeast Philadelphia asks, "It's does seem a little weird... Why not get a new supplier?"

Instead, stores will be transitioning to soft-serve ice cream as their custard supply runs out.

Moody says they couldn't do that.

"We couldn't not actually get the eggs at any price in enough quantities to supply our system because we are the largest seller of this product in the U.S."

Instead of custard, they are now selling soft serve ice cream.

"Until we are able to acquire eggs we are substituting a premium Rita's Soft-Serve Ice Cream which is also terrific in all our signature treats," the company says.

"Tastes very similar, almost identical recipe with the exception of eggs to our custard, so we got it just as close as we could so the consistency is the same," Moody says.

One little customer didn't even notice anything else besides her cotton candy water ice.

"I love cotton candy!" (Have you tried the custard?) what's that?"

There is a chance they could have custard back on the menu before the end of the summer season.


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