Few people went to Coppelia before the announcement of the price increase

Few people went to Coppelia before the announcement of the price increase

Few people went to the Coppelia ice cream parlor in Havana this Saturday before the announcement of the price increase, which will finally take effect next Tuesday, workers at the center reported. Although it is common for dozens of people to arrive very early at the popular shop in Havana’s Vedado to avoid long lines, this time prudence called many to a chapter and only less than 15 people were seen at each entrance before 10 am, time when the store opens.

The capital government announced this friday that “the scoop of Coppelia ice cream will cost 9 pesos” and the Varadero, of lower quality, will cost 7. The justification given this time by the Internal Trade Business Group was the increase in the value “of fresh milk, which impacts the wholesale costs of industrial production of milk, as is the case of ice cream”.

A mother who came to Coppelia with her two children “took a deep breath” because she thought it would be more expensive to go out with her children this Saturday, she tells 14ymedio. Although she did not miss the opportunity to ironize: “To have more than two ice cream salads here you have to have a ‘little friend,'” she says, referring to the usual corruption in the ice cream parlor.

The local government assured that the combination of “the quality of the ice cream that is offered” and “the quality of the service” will make customers enjoy “a unique and excellent product.”

“What the workers here at Coppelia want is to steal, that’s what interests them, selling ice cream on the ‘left'”

“What the workers here at Coppelia want is to steal, that’s what interests them, selling ice cream for left (informal market),” says a man from Havana who frequently visits the ice cream parlor. “Serving customers is a collateral obligation, a necessary evil, and one realizes when you ask a question or complain about the service, and what you receive is a very poor response from them, and this is just one of many examples,” he emphasizes.

In January 2021, when the Ordering Task was implemented, each scoop of ice cream in Coppelia began to be sold at the price of 7 pesos when before it cost 1.50. The traditional salad, which includes five balls, was then raised to 35 pesos, the four-ball Super Twins to 28, and the Three Graces to 21.

After hundreds of criticisms in the Cuban streets and social networks, the authorities lowered the new tariffs but without specifying details and set the price of ice cream at 5 pesos, although it maintained the cost of 7 for each ball of 90 grams in the Las Cuatro Joyas room, which includes a differentiated service.

The symbolism of Coppelia and its ice creams, which once exceeded ten flavors and have been immortalized even in films such as Strawberry and Chocolatemade this measure of the so-called Task Ordering generate an avalanche of complaints, memes on social networks and reactions from customers at the premises.

The ice cream parlor, located on the central corner of L and 23, is an icon of Havana and always has long queues, especially for low-income people and students who cannot afford the prices of the private offerings where a scoop can cost between 20 and 25 pesos.

For families with children, eating in its open-air lounges, its court area or the most glamorous upper floor became a typical weekend outing for decades. It is also a recurring place for students of the University of Havana, a few meters from the ice cream parlor.

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