Mini-Milks represented a new direction in ice-lollies, and I'm not quite sure whether it was a direction that anyone really wanted to go in.
In the seventies and eighties, we had Funny-Feet, Strawberry Mivvis, Zooms and, of course, the rather splendid Cornettos and the much less marvellous King Cones. And then we had, courtesy of Lyons-Maid, the Mini-Milk, which was about five inches long, cylindrical (about an inch in diameter), white, and - it is to be supposed - made from milk (it was hard to tell - this was in the days before labelling really took off, and before anyone was all that conscious of what it was they were putting in their gob, and which diseases, conditions or personality disorders it might give you - innocence, huh?). An ice-cream made of milk? The white stuff that comes out of cows? How much fun is that?
When other ice-creams (and their derivatives) were trying to see how much sugar, fat, and artificial colouring they could cram into their frozen confectionery (not to mention aspartame, monosodium glutomate and more E-numbers than you could shake a stick at), some big-cheese in a marketting meeting must have hit upon the idea that maybe the notion that ice cream might be good for you could just sell a few.
It was, of course, doomed to failure. The advert had, I seem to recall, a cartoon milk-maid with a 'totally non-stereotypical Devon accent' (reminiscent of the country bumpkin) raving about how good Mini-Milks were. And we didn't buy it. Or them, to be honest. I guess the advertising was flawed, rather like the Milky Way stuff was... 'Light and fluffy so it won't fill you up'? - What's the point in eating it then? Mini-Milks? Ice-cream made of that stuff that mums keeps trying to make us drink telling us it's good for us? We hadn't heard of psychology back then, but we knew when we were being played for fools...
Advertisers learnt an important lesson: targetting kids' products at the adults doesn't work - kids and adults have very different value systems. (Why not target them entirely at kids, and let them go and whine to their parents until the parents give in?)
Everyone I know tried to make Mini-Milks in the freezer by freezing milk. How stupid were we?