It may be the coldest new trend in Southern New Hampshire.
With six new stores opening within the last year, frozen yogurt shops are now sprinkled all over the region.
“It’s new, innovative and cool,” said Elizabeth Menard, 17, of Londonderry. “And it’s a lot healthier than ice cream is.”
Menard was eating her customized blueberry and cheesecake treat at Sweet Kiwi Frozen Yogurt in Londonderry, which opened last month. With self-service, funky furniture and bright colors, so far the shop has been a success.
“It’s been a really warm welcome,” said Laura Calamari, co-owner of Sweet Kiwi. “We thought we’d be catering to the teenage group, but we’ve been pleasantly surprised to see people of all ages coming in.”
In the last five years, many frozen yogurt shops have opened throughout the country. The industry grew by an average of 3.7 percent per year between 2007 and 2012 , according to a report done by market researching firm IBISWorld.
FroyoWorld in Salem also opened within the last month.
“This is a healthy alternative that isn’t something that will break the bank,” co-owner Lynn Caesar said. “It’s something that the consumer can control.”
It’s all about customization. Customers are handed a cup and they use self-serve machines to fill it up. Whether it’s typical vanilla and chocolate, or salted caramel and root beer, customers can mix and match as many flavors as they want.
Once they’ve decided on their combination of frozen yogurt, on comes the toppings. Graham crackers, gummy worms and fruit are among the dozens of options available.
“I just love being able to put on the toppings,” said Leah Farley, 49, of Derry.
After the treat is finally made, the cup is weighed and customer is charged by the ounce. Frozen yogurt is typically priced between 40 and 50 cents per ounce.