Athens, Tenn.-based Mayfield Dairy Farms is to expand its line of ice cream products and services throughout Alabama.

After a two-year alliance between Mayfield and Barber Dairy, whereby a limited amount of Mayfield ice cream was distributed by Barber throughout the state, the sister dairies have decided to offer Mayfield's full line of ice cream products, replacing Barber's ice cream.

Mayfield began offering its "select" line of half-gallon ice cream products to Alabamans in the spring of 2000 with 20 of its "more good stuff" flavours, such as Turtle Tracks, Moose Tracks, Brown Cow, and All Natural Vanilla.

The new ice cream line extension includes Mayfield pints, Mayfield "Classic" half-gallons, and Mayfield novelties. Since Spring 2000, Mayfield has sold only its Select line of ice cream products, including indulgent flavours such as Turtle Tracks and Caramel Coyote. Mayfield's Classic line, which includes traditional favorites such as vanilla, chocolate and strawberry, will now be available. Mayfield novelties, like Brown Cows, Fudge Bars, Ice Cream Sandwiches and Banana Pops will also be introduced. Mayfield Classics and novelties will replace the Barber's brand and will be comparably priced.

"The employees at the plant and in the marketplace are excited about the change," said Scottie Mayfield, President of Mayfield. "As the former Barber employees begin to don Mayfield uniforms, there seems to be an air of excitement that's hard to explain. Barber's makes a terrific ice cream, but as our companies competed side-by-side, Mayfield products experienced a surge in sales. The synergy that's created by focusing our resources and investing in one brand of ice cream will produce even stronger results."

Production and sales of Barber's Milk will continue unchanged. The sister dairies will continue to operate separately, sharing a dual-plant location in Birmingham, with half of the property devoted to Barber's milk production and half devoted to the Mayfield Ice Cream plant. Mayfield will continue to purchase cream from Barber's.

Mayfield has invested US$17m into the Alabama economy over the past two years, because of the positive growth of the Mayfield brand in the southeastern US. Plant modernization and expansion and new distribution facilities were necessary to equip the existing plant for the production of Mayfield ice cream products. The investment will allow Mayfield to expand the products offered to area consumers. Bringing the entire line of Mayfield ice cream into Alabama will also create new jobs throughout the state.

The company is in the process of establishing seven distribution centers, including six in Alabama and one in Pensacola, Florida.