INTERNATIONAL -- Japanese scientists have come up with a cool solution to stop ice cream melting before you've had time to finish it.
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The ice cream retains its original shape in 28°C (82.4 F) weather and still tastes 'cool', according to the report.
A strawberry extract stops the oil and water from separating so quickly which means the sweet treat stays frozen - even if you blow a hair dryer at them, reports suggest.
The non melting ice cream was first created by mistake by a pastry chef looking to make use of odd-shaped strawberries.
Scientists at Japan's Biotherapy Development Research Centre in Kanazawa used a polyphenol strawberry extract to develop melt-resistant lollies.
'Polyphenol liquid has properties to make it difficult for water and oil to separate', said Tomihisa Ota, a professor at Kanazawa University who helped develop the lollies.
'So a popsicle containing it will be able to retain the original shape of the cream for a longer time than usual, and be hard to melt'.
The ice creams, which are only for sale in parts of Japan, first hit stores in Kanazawa in April before rolling out in Osaka and Tokyo.
The company created the 'non melting popsicles' by accident.
A pastry chef wanted to create a new kind of confectionery in order to use strawberries that were not the right shape to be sold.
The initiative was part of efforts by the company to help strawberry farmers affected by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.
The chef realised the cream would solidify when put in contact with the strawberry extract.
Although this made the extract redundant in confectioneries, scientists realized it could be used to stop ice creams melting.
A reporter from Asahi Shimbun tested the product in 28°C (82.4 F) heat in Kanazawa.
He found the ice cream 'retained its original shape' after five minutes of heat.
According to Takeshi Toyoda, president of the Biotherapy Development Research Center, the ice cream remains 'almost the same even if exposed to the hot air from a dryer'.
There is no word when the ice creams - dubbed Kanazawa Ice - will be available outside Japan.
SOURCE Phoebe Weston, Mailonline
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