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Become a Member

There are so many benefits to being a member of the NICRA organization. Here are just a few...

Monthly NICRA Bulletin

You will get a digital (emailed copy) of the monthly NICRA BULLETIN featuring member’s and supplier’s articles, marketing calendars, industry news, and the timely frozen dessert business information.  We also have featured recipes, member business profiles and much much more.  This publication is a great resource to open or grow your ice cream or frozen dessert business.

We would love your suggestions as to other features and topics you would like to read about in the NICRA Bulletin.

Access to the Member Only Section of the NICRA website

We are constantly reviewing and adding new content to the members-only section of the NICRA website.  We think you will find a lot of great information there, for example:

  • Backdated copies of the Monthly NICRA Bulletin back to 2006.
  • A full member directory with listings of other ice cream selling members and suppliers to the industry
  • Our Ideas Kit with manuals and white papers on topics such as business planning, operational procedures and a whole slew of other topics.
  • Our Video Based Training Platform for you, your managers and employees.

Video-Based Training

NICRA has contracted the Scoop School Online Training program for all current members and their managers and employees.  This online video-based training, worth over $600 annually is accessible through the members-only section of the site and has video modules covering topics such as:

  • Opening a New Ice Cream or Frozen Dessert Business
  • Frozen Dessert Marketing and Promotion
  • Small Business Finance for Frozen Dessert Stores
  • Employee Hiring Training and Motivation Techniques
  • Health Department Procedures and Safe Food Handling Information
  • Batch Freezing and Scooped Ice Cream Fundamentals
  • Employee Policies and Procedure Manuals and Handbooks
  • A Toolbox with forms, charts, and checklists to manage and run your business
  • and much more.

You will find the NICRA Free Coupon in the Video-based training section which will get you access to all of the training for free.

The Members Only NICRA Closed Facebook Group

This is one of the great benefits of NICRA membership, There are over 300 members conversing over this group which is a great value to new and seasoned ice cream business owners. Only NICRA Members are permitted into this closed group.

Go to and ask permission to join the group. If you have a manager or business partner that also would like access, please contact the NICRA office to request access. 

Access will only be given to personnel that are listed in your NICRA registration documents.

Remember - you must be a registered member of NICRA to be accepted into the closed Facebook group.

Annual Convention

Held each year in a different city, the Annual Convention gives you the opportunity to hear industry leaders speak with messages directed to your business. You can participate in roundtable discussions where your questions and problems are addressed. Meet supplier members and look close up at their products and services. Make friends and exchange ideas with successful retailers from various parts of the country.

This convention is the only Ice Cream Specific event on the trade show calendar and is a must to attend to learn about industry trends, events, and practices.  Only NICRA members are permitted to attend this annual event.

Ice Cream Clinic

Submit your ice cream to be analyzed and compared to ice cream standards by a professor of dairy science.

The ice cream is scored according to color, texture, taste, bacterial count, and many other factors.

Blue ribbons are awarded to those scoring the highest marks, then red and white ribbons. Vanilla is analyzed each year. Chocolate and strawberry are analyzed on alternating years.


Best New Flavor Contest

Held in conjunction with the annual Ice Cream Clinic, members submit samples of their best new flavor or a selected flavor to be judged by their peers at the Annual Convention.

Attendees at the convention taste each sample and vote for the ice cream they like best. Certificates are awarded for first, second, and third place winners, in all categories.

The Bryce Thompson Scholarship Fund

We also have our members access to our annual Scholarship program that is awarded at the convention. The scholarship benefits university students that work for our member stores and businesses.

Each year NICRA offers up to $17,000 in scholarships to NICRA member’s employees and is a great source of assistance to help your employees through their college experience.

Discounts and Special Offers

NICRA is constantly approaching Regional and National service providers for discounts on good and services to help you open and grow your business. Currently, we have discounts available for:

  • Business Liability Insurance
  • Constant Contact Email marketing
  • Avis Car Rental
  • Heartland Card Processing, POS systems, Employee Management, Business Finance
  • Jolt Employee and Ice Cream Product Management Systems

Annual Yearbook

A directory of Active Members, Supplier Members, product information and contact addresses, phone and contact details.

Memberships for new members, both business and owners and those wanting to get into the ice cream business, start at $225 per year.  Supplier members and those who have business that provide products and services to the ice cream industry, can become members starting at $275.00 per year.