Rachel Hunter's modelling career kicked off in one of Tip Top's ads when she was just 15. It was the mid-1980s and a Trumpet cost 95c.

Trumpets now cost about $2.80 and today, their maker, Tip Top, is celebrating its 75th birthday.

And if you're an icecream fan then you're in luck, because the company is celebrating by giving away 50,000 Jelly Tips.

Truckloads of Jelly Tips will be stationed around the country - at Takapuna and Pakuranga in Auckland, for example - from 3.30pm to 4.45pm, or until the goodies run out.

The company chose Jelly Tips to celebrate the milestone because New Zealand's 4.3 million people consume around four million of them every year and the icecream on a stick has become a symbol of the brand.

If you like a lick of the cold stuff, here's some things you might not know about the iconic New Zealand icecream:

Rachel Hunter appeared on television for the first time in an advertisement for Tip Top Trumpet.

Bret McKenzie, now famous from his role in Flight of the Conchords, and television presenter Dominic Bowden both appeared in Tip Top advertisements before they became household names.

The three most popular Tip Top flavours are vanilla, cookies and cream, and boysenberry.

The oldest novelty ice cream still in production is the Eskimo Pie, which was created in the early 1950s.

Albert Hayman and Len Malaghan started the company by opening an ice cream parlour in Wellington in 1936.

By 1962, the pair opened the Southern Hemisphere's largest and most advanced "centre for ice cream excellence" overlooking the Southern Motorway at Mt Wellington. It cost them $700,000.

Tip Top produces around 35 million litres of ice cream a year.

The Jelly Tips will be given away in Whangarei, Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Palmerston North, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill.

ON THE WEB
www.tiptop.co.nz/About-Tip-Top/75th-Birthday.aspx