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Ice Cream Houses - China - February 2013

“There is unmet demand for better-for-you ice cream products, with consumers wanting to strike a balance between health and indulgence when they consume ice cream. Ice cream houses could tap into this segment by actively offering and promoting their better-for-you ice cream products or alternatives. ”

– Lui Meng Chow – Research Analyst

Some questions answered in this report include:

  • What has been the effect of the emergence of cafés, fast food and modern oriental (traditional) dessert houses?
  • How can ice cream house entice more consumers despite the fierce competition with foodservice outlets?
  • Is the emergence of more fusion food in the wider catering market beginning to influence ice cream houses’ menu and flavour?
  • How does the operator balance health and indulgence to target their consumers?

Report Introduction:

Despite the historic lack of dairy products in the Chinese diet, demand has been emerging from the growing population that has been newly exposed to Western dairy-based foods. The ice cream house sector is not new in China, with foreign ice cream foodservice outlets appearing in the country as early as the late 1980s to early 1990s, however it only expanded rapidly in the mid-2000s when China was hosting various international events.

As China’s economy is growing rapidly, lower tier cities too are increasingly benefiting from the market’s growth, with more consumers starting to be exposed to the ice cream parlour culture. Meanwhile, rising average incomes, greater numbers of middle class consumers and the spreading influence of Western trends mean that Chinese consumers are becoming more willing to indulge in varieties of ice cream with exotic flavours, as well as innovative ice cream products. Meanwhile, in wealthier cities, consumers who are stressed through work are increasingly willing to pay for premium treats and a cosy environment.

Ice cream houses are still regarded as a western concept and ice cream seen as a seasonal product, which most Chinese only consume during warm seasons. One of their direct competitors is the Chinese dessert houses, which serve a variety of Chinese traditional desserts. These have long been consumed by the Chinese, especially sweet soup in the southern region. Their flexibility to be served hot or cold has allowed the Chinese to enjoy them in both warm and cold seasons. Nowadays, Chinese dessert houses are becoming modernised and are popular places for people to socialise, indulge or relax there.

China’s one child policy also means that parents tend to reward their children with quality treats that they themselves probably did not get to enjoy in the past. Moreover, ice cream houses also increasingly used as a socialising venue for consumers, rather than somewhere just to appease children or indulge. To remain competitive with other food services outlets, ice cream houses should where possible diversify their food and drink choices and promotional touchpoints to appeal to various demographics.

There is unmet demand for better-for-you ice cream products, with consumers wanting to strike a balance between health and indulgence when they consume ice cream. Ice cream houses could tap into this segment by actively offering and promoting their better-for-you ice cream products or alternatives. 

 

Liqueurs - UK - January 2012

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • In this report we answer the key questions
        • Definition
          • Consumer research
          • Executive Summary

              • The market
                • Figure 1: China retail value of ice cream houses, 2007-17
              • Companies and brands
                • Figure 2: Leading companies’ share of retail value sales of ice cream houses in China, 2012
              • The consumer
                • Young consumers tend to visit more to ice cream houses
                  • Figure 3: Frequency of purchasing from ice cream houses, by gender and age group, January 2013
                • Indulgence and socialising – other major triggers apart from hot weather
                  • Brand, price, varieties as well as hygiene standards seen as most important to choice of venue
                    • Scoop ice cream, soft serve cones and sundaes are still the popular choices
                      • Other aspects besides competition play a role in ice cream house expansion
                        • Key issues
                          • Key issue 1: Ice cream houses face challenges from other foodservice formats
                            • Figure 4: Agreement with attitudinal statement “The atmosphere in an ice cream house is more suitable for younger people”, by age group, January 2013
                          • Key issue 2: Menu varieties through creativity and fusions
                            • Figure 5: Selected important factors in choosing an ice cream house, January 2013
                          • Key issue 3: Promotion growing in importance
                            • Figure 6: Agreement with attitudinal statement “I would be encouraged to go more to ice cream house when there are special offers”, by age group, January 2013
                          • Key issue 4: Positioning ice cream as healthy to reduce barrier to consumption
                            • Figure: Agreement with attitudinal statement “I would like to see lower calorie range offered at ice cream houses”, by gender, January 2013
                          • What we think
                          • The Market

                            • Key points
                              • Market size
                                • Figure 7: Ice cream house outlets and retail sales, 2008-12
                              • Market driver
                                • Market barrier
                                  • Figure 8: Location of buying ice cream at foodservice outlets, June 2012
                                • Forecast
                                  • Figure 9: China retail value of ice cream houses, 2007-17
                              • Companies and Brands

                                • Key points
                                  • Top five ice cream houses make up about half of the sector
                                    • Figure 10: Leading ice cream house chains’ retail values, market share and CAGR, 2010-12
                                    • Figure 11: Number of outlets of leading ice cream house chains, 2008-12
                                  • Dairy Queen (冰雪皇后)
                                    • Häagen-Dazs (哈根达斯)
                                      • Baskin-Robbins (芭斯罗缤)
                                        • Iceason (爱茜茜里)
                                          • Cold Stone Creamery (酷圣石)
                                          • The Consumer

                                            • Key points
                                              • Young consumers tend to visit ice cream houses more
                                                  • Figure 12: Frequency of purchasing from ice cream houses, by gender and age group, January 2013
                                                • Indulgence and socialising – other major triggers apart from hot weather
                                                  • Figure 13: Trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                  • Figure 14: Percentage breakdown of ice cream production volume, by month, 2009-11
                                                • Brand, price, varieties as well as hygiene standards seen as most important to choice of venue
                                                    • Figure 15: Important factors in choosing an ice cream house, January 2013
                                                  • Scoop ice cream, soft serve cones and sundae are still the popular choices
                                                    • Figure 16: Ice cream products bought, and bought most often in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                    • Figure 17: Other products bought, and bought most often in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                  • Other aspects besides competition play a role in ice cream house expansion
                                                      • Figure 18: Selected attitudes towards ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                  • Key Issue 1: Ice Cream Houses Face Challenges From Other Foodservice Formats

                                                    • Key points
                                                      • Rise of competition from Chinese dessert houses
                                                        • The revival of Chinese desserts as another popular indulgence option
                                                            • Figure 19: Attitudes towards ice cream houses, by age group, January 2013
                                                          • Bundled Chinese dessert promotion woos the youth to chill out and gather
                                                            • Figure 20: Comparison of estimated average spending per person at Chinese dessert houses and ice cream houses, April 2013
                                                          • Casual ambience makes social gathering relaxing and fun
                                                            • Significance of café culture
                                                              • Visiting café promotes a stylish image in urban Chinese cities
                                                                • Figure 21: Consumer attitudes towards café as a reflection of lifestyle, August 2012
                                                              • Premium and cosy ambience set-ups lure the high-end customers to stay
                                                                • Figure 22: Consumer attitudes towards café in terms of unique decoration and Wi-Fi Internet accessibility, August 2012
                                                                • Figure 23: Comparison of estimated average spending per person at cafés and ice cream houses, April 2013
                                                              • More affordable ice cream in fast food outlets
                                                                • Figure 24: Ice cream bought at food service outlets, June 2012
                                                                • Figure 25: Comparison of estimated average spending per person at fast food restaurants and ice cream houses, April 2013
                                                              • Driving relevance to the target demographics in store ambience
                                                                • Figure 26: Attitudes towards ice cream houses, by monthly personal income, January 2013
                                                              • Häagen-Dazs’ premium parlour offers a stylish lifestyle experience for high income consumers
                                                                • Funky ice cream houses attract families with kids and young consumers
                                                                  • Potential of co-branding to expand ice cream houses beyond their competition
                                                                      • Figure 27: Location of eating ice cream, June 2012
                                                                    • What it means
                                                                    • Key Issue 2: Menu Varieties Through Creativity and Fusion

                                                                      • Key points
                                                                        • Consumers want a variety of options they can crave
                                                                          • Figure 28: Selected important factors in choosing an ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                        • Why varieties are important… and which varieties…
                                                                          • Figure 29: Agreement with attitudinal statement “I prefer ice cream houses that also offer other food and drinks”, January 2013
                                                                        • Menu item variety to drive footfall and dwell time
                                                                          • Figure 30: Types of products (other than ice cream) bought before and most often in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                        • Brands succeed through ice cream flavour varieties, fusion and creativity
                                                                          • Figure 31: Repertoire of flavours of ice cream bought, June 2012
                                                                          • Figure 32: Flavours of ice cream bought, June 2012
                                                                        • DQ limited-time ice cream varieties stimulate public interest
                                                                          • Cold Stone Creamery utilises mix-ins to create more ice cream varieties
                                                                            • Baroque’s colourful DIY Italian Ice cream stick innovation a hit with consumers
                                                                              • Figure 33: Frequency of eating ice cream, by format, June 2012
                                                                            • Seasonal ice cream inspirations boost spending
                                                                              • Figure 34: Agreement with attitudinal statement “I am more likely to visit when festive ice cream products are available”, January 2013
                                                                            • Romantic days – Valentine’s Day and White Day
                                                                              • Ice cream moon cake for Mid-autumn festival
                                                                                • Asian desserts fusion explorations create opportunities
                                                                                  • What it means
                                                                                  • Key Issue 3: Promotion Growing in Importance

                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                      • Promotions to drive planned purchases
                                                                                        • Figure 35: Important factors in choosing an ice cream houses, by age group and monthly personal income, January 2013
                                                                                        • Figure 36: Agreement with attitude towards ice cream houses, by age group, January 2013
                                                                                      • Daily, seasonal or limited time promotions
                                                                                          • Figure 37: Selected common festivals in China
                                                                                        • Value set
                                                                                          • Loyalty programmes promote frequent consumer visits
                                                                                            • Exploiting deal-of-the-day websites and apps promotion to the full
                                                                                              • What it means
                                                                                              • Key issue 4: Healthy Positioning of Ice Cream to Reduce Barriers to Consumption

                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                  • Do health concerns stop the Chinese from indulging in ice cream?
                                                                                                    • Figure 38: Trigger to visit ice cream houses, by gender, January 2013
                                                                                                  • Opportunity to tap into better-for-you ice cream food service segments
                                                                                                    • Figure 39: Top 10 claims for the ice cream* sold through the retail channels, 2009-12
                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Selected health-related claims in new product launches, China and global, 2010-12
                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Attitudes towards ice cream houses, by gender, January 2013
                                                                                                  • Exploring healthy ice cream alternatives
                                                                                                    • Frozen yogurt and sorbet
                                                                                                      • The premium and healthy image of gelato
                                                                                                        • Transparency on ice cream sources, nutritional facts and emphasis on health positioning
                                                                                                          • Nothing-to-hide transparency of ice-cream making
                                                                                                            • Display nutritional facts and calories
                                                                                                              • What it means
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Market Size and Market Share

                                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Ice cream house outlets and retail sales, 2008-12
                                                                                                                  • Figure 43: Leading ice cream house chains’ retail values, market share and CAGR, 2010-12
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Market Forecast

                                                                                                                  • Figure 44: Ice cream houses’ forecast retail sales, 2012-17
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Frequency of Purchasing from Ice Cream Houses

                                                                                                                  • Figure 45: Frequency of purchasing from ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 46: Most popular frequency of purchasing from ice cream houses, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 47: Next most popular frequency of purchasing from ice cream houses, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Trigger to Visit Ice Cream Houses

                                                                                                                  • Figure 48: Trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 49: Ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, by most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 50: Ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, by next most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 51: Ice cream houses visited the most often in the past 6 months, by most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 52: Ice cream houses visited the most often in the past 6 months, by next most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 53: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 54: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by next most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 55: Types of products bought most often in the past 6 months, by most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 56: Types of products bought most often in the past 6 months, by next most popular trigger to visit ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Ice Cream Houses Visited in the Past 6 Months

                                                                                                                  • Figure 57: Ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Ice Cream Houses Visited the Most Often in the Past 6 Months

                                                                                                                  • Figure 58: Ice cream houses visited the most often in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Important Factors in Choosing Ice Cream Houses

                                                                                                                  • Figure 59: Important factors in choosing an ice cream house, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Types of Products Bought in the Past 6 Months

                                                                                                                  • Figure 60: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 61: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by most popular ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 62: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by next most popular ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 63: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by other ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 64: Types of products bought in the past 6 months, by least popular ice cream houses visited in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Types of Products Bought Most Often in the Past 6 Months

                                                                                                                  • Figure 65: Types of products bought most often in the past 6 months, January 2013
                                                                                                              • Appendix – Attitudes Towards Ice Cream Houses

                                                                                                                  • Figure 66: Attitudes towards ice cream houses, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 67: Agreement with the statements ‘I would be encouraged to go more to ice cream house when there are special offers.’ and ‘I would like to see lower calorie ranges offered at ice cream houses’, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 68: Agreement with the statements ‘The atmosphere in an ice cream house is more suitable for younger people’ and ‘It is romantic to have ice cream at the ice cream house’, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 69: Agreement with the statements ‘It’s worth ordering ice cream combo set rather than order à la carte.’ and ‘I prefer ice cream houses that also offer other food and drinks’, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 70: Agreement with the statements ‘I prefer the nice ambience in an ice cream house than other places’ and ‘I am more likely to visit when festive ice cream products are available’, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 71: Agreement with the statements ‘I tend to go to an ice cream house when I want to treat myself.’ and ‘I prefer to go to premium ice cream house’, by demographics, January 2013
                                                                                                                  • Figure 72: Agreement with the statement ‘Ice cream houses are just the latest craze that is not here to stay’, by demographics, January 2013

                                                                                                              Companies Covered

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                                                                                                              Ice Cream Houses - China - February 2013

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