A LEGENDARY Southend ice cream company has launched its first range of dog-friendly desserts for pawed pals to enjoy along the seafront.

Rossi, an award-winning company which started making ice creams in Southend nearly a century ago, has pioneered new desserts that are said to benefit dogs’ health.

Created at the Rossi factory on Purdeys Industrial Estate, Rochford, the ice cream contains “essential nutrients” for dogs.

Colin Gray, former company director at Rossi, described the product as “terrific”.

Echo: The treats have been specially catered to meet dogs' nutritional needs.The treats have been specially catered to meet dogs' nutritional needs. (Image: Rossi)


He said: “I think it’s a terrific idea. It’s fantastic to be able to look after our customers and their dogs.

“Everyone likes to take their dogs along the seafront.”

The treats come in differently coloured tubs to the human-friendly ice creams and are decorated with paw prints.

Rossi CEO James Sinclair told the Echo: “We have so many dogs come into our shops that we wanted to make something for them to enjoy.

“As a dog owner myself, I want our four-legged customers to enjoy themselves just as much as their owners.

“Now, you can have a 99, and so can your dog.”


Echo: Dogs of all shapes and sizes can enjoy a seafront treat.Dogs of all shapes and sizes can enjoy a seafront treat. (Image: Rossi)


The ice cream tubs contain reduced sugar and dairy but are still based on Rossi’s iconic vanilla taste.

Mr Sinclair added: “Dogs love ice cream, but we needed to make it healthier for them.

“I hope it will bring more dog walkers into our shops. I always think Southend seafront has more dogs than people.”

The innovative new product was created by experts at the Rossi factory.


Echo: James Sinclair wants to cater for seafront dog-walkers.James Sinclair wants to cater for seafront dog-walkers. (Image: Rossi)


“I’m very proud of everything we do at our factory,” Mr Sinclair said.

“It was researched and developed by our amazing ice cream connoisseurs.”

Rossi has been a firm Southend favourite since the Rossi family opened the original parlour along Marine Parade, Southend, in 1932. A kiosk along Westcliff seafront followed six years later.

Over the next few decades, two new shops were added along Western Esplanade, along with another kiosk on Southend High Street and a factory.

In 2006, the business was sold to Colin Gray.

When Mr Gray decided to retire in 2021, the business was sold to James Sinclair, who also owns Marsh Farm.