Could the ice cream of the future become a thing of the past?
Dippin' Dots Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reports. The company, which makes the frozen treats seen at stadiums and amusement parks, is based in Paducah, Kentucky, and it made the move in an attempt to avoid foreclosure.
According to the Journal, the company fell behind on loan payments to Regions Financial Corp. four years ago, and now has liabilities totaling $12 million.
Steve Heisner, a company spokesman, told CNN that the company "absolutely" will remain in business.
The New York Times reports that the company suffered a setback in 2007, "when its patent for cryogenic encapsulation was invalidated by a federal court jury." The verdict was prompted by a lawsuit Dippin' Dotes had filed against Frosty Bites Distribution, maker of a product called Mini Melts.
Dippin' Dots was founded in the late 1980s by Curt Jones, a microbiologist, who "pioneered the process of cryogenic encapsulation...a scientific way of saying he used super-cold freezing methods to make little beads of ice cream," according to the company's website.