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July 08, 2015

Rita's Water Ice stops serving custard due to egg shortage from bird flu

Ice Cream Bird Flu
07082015_Ritas_AP Matt Rourke/AP

A Rita's Italian Ice location in Philadelphia

Ah, the Rita's Water Ice gelati. A beautiful layering of Italian ice and creamy frozen custard. This signature treat will no longer have one of its key ingredients, according to the company's website.

Rita's says it will no longer offer custard in its stores across the country due to the national egg shortage that has resulted from the avian flu outbreak.

The chain will instead be substituting soft-serve ice cream in its Blendinis, Mistos and Gelatis.

Rita's acknowledges that there will be a slight difference in taste and texture. 

"The egg in our Frozen Custard provides a rich, creamy flavor and texture — that’s what makes our product so unique!" the company said on its site. "That being said, our soft-serve ice cream comes pretty darn close!"

The chain plans to reintroduce its custard as soon as the supply is stable again.

"We will bring back our award-winning Frozen Custard as soon as we know that we have access to a sustainable supply of eggs."