Description

This report provides comprehensive and current information and analysis of the US ice cream and frozen novelties market including ice cream market size, anticipated market forecast, relevant market segmentation, ice cream market share and industry trends for the ice cream and frozen novelties market in the US.

Current market landscape

54% of US adults agree there is nothing wrong with eating indulgent food, and the same portion agree indulgent foods can benefit your overall health. This finding foreshadows the future of frozen treat brands by highlighting a shift away from dated and restrictive definitions of health and towards the importance of decompression, connection, and enjoyment ice cream can facilitate.

Future ice cream and frozen novelties market trends

Soaring grocery prices can be especially threatening to discretionary and impulse-driven categories such as frozen treats. Even so, premium is the leading concept that would motivate frozen treat shoppers to buy more. This indicates inflationary prices will lend to a “less-but-better” approach to treating.

Years of pandemic restriction has sparked consumer desire to dine out and socialize in person; expect to see consumers trading CPG frozen treats for parlors and restaurants. Especially in light of inflation, the experiential element of dining out can help justify higher prices. Retailers and brands can rival foodservice through concepts that convey everyday enjoyment.

At-home lifestyles further broadened what kinds of foods can be considered a snack, creating greater access to categories such as frozen treats that were previously ruled out due to lack of shelf stability and portability. Leading concept innovation of interest, including small formats, RTD milkshakes and ice cream in pouches, signal ongoing opportunity for frozen treats brands to connect to find a place in snacking occasions outside of evening dessert.

Read on to discover more about the US ice cream and frozen novelties consumer market, read our US Frozen Snacks Market Report 2021, or take a look at our other Food research reports.

Quickly understand

  • The impact of pandemic/re-emergence and inflation on ice cream and frozen novelties.
  • Frozen treat brand strategies, challenges and opportunities.
  • Insights on frozen treat purchase locations.
  • Frozen treat products purchased.
  • Frozen treat health attitudes.
  • Flavor and concept innovation to motivate purchase.

Covered in this ice cream and frozen novelties market report

Brands include: M&Ms, Little Debbie, Froneri International, Unilever, Wells Enterprises, Blue Bell Creameries, Dairy Farmers of America, Turkey Hill Dairy, Mars Incorporated, Rich Products Corporation, Nestle Drumstick, Outshine, Edy’s, Häagen-Dazs, Mars’ Snickers, Twix, Carvel, Blue Bunny, Snickers, Twix, Klondike, Popsicle, The Skinny Cow, Magnum, Good Humor, Talenti, Breyers, Halo Top, Mayfield, Yasso, Friendly’s, Kemps, So Delicious, Simple Truth, Beckon, Hudsonville, La Michoacana, Tropicale.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

This report, written by Sydney Olson, a leading analyst in the Food and Drink sector, delivers in-depth commentary and analysis on the frozen treats market to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Sales of ice cream and frozen novelties remain elevated far beyond the pre-pandemic baseline, though have entered a period of stabilization as consumers eagerly return to out-of-home experiences and manage soaring grocery spend. Exciting flavor profiles, snackable formats, premium concepts and experiential tactics can keep consumers engaged, justify higher prices and fend off returning parlor/shop competition.

Sydney Olson, Food and Drink AnalystSydney Olson
Food and Drink Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
    • This Report looks at the following areas
    • Definition
    • Market context
  2. Executive Summary

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
      • Figure 1: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 2: Ice cream and frozen novelties outlook, 2022-27
    • Opportunities and challenges
    • Ice cream is any brands’ game
      • Figure 3: Frozen treat purchase attributes, 2022
    • Consumers don’t want conventionally “healthy” ice cream
      • Figure 4: Frozen treat health attitudes, 2022
    • We all scream for snacking ice cream
      • Figure 5: Motivating purchase – Concepts, 2022
    • The everyday, at-home parlor shop
      • Figure 6: Purchase location associations, 2022
    • Beverage-inspired flavors
      • Figure 7: Motivating purchase – Flavors, 2022
  3. Market Size and Forecast

    • Performance remains elevated, but 2022 conditions trigger slowed sales
    • Consumers eager for “normal” favor on-premise ice cream
    • Conflict between high grocery spend and discretionary categories
      • Figure 8: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 9: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
  4. Segment Performance

    • Novelties keep declines at bay
      • Figure 10: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, by segment, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 11: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, by segment, at current prices, 2016-26
    • Novelties achieve dominant market share
      • Figure 12: Segment share of total US retail sales and forecast, at current prices, 2019-21
    • 2022 will temporarily dim the light on novelties
      • Figure 13: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
    • Frozen yogurt/non-dairy struggles to find footing
      • Figure 14: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen yogurt/non-dairy, at current prices, 2016-26
    • Steady climb of sherbet/sorbet/ices
      • Figure 15: Total US retail sales and forecast of sherbet/sorbet/ices, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 16: Consumer perceptions of sherbet/sorbet/ices launches, 2019-22
    • C-store can stem retail loss and take advantage of on-premise gains
      • Figure 17: Total US retail sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by channel, at current prices, 2016-21
  5. Market Factors

    • Snacking habits live on as pandemic fades
      • Figure 18: Snacking motivation, 2022
    • Inflation increases competition among purchase locations
    • Retailers could take a hit as consumers seek experiences
    • Desire for social reconnection drives foodservice occasions
      • Figure 19: US inflation rate, 2021-22
    • Sustainability efforts remain stagnant in the category
      • Figure 20: Select ethical claims, 2019-21
  6. Market Share/Key Players

    • Novelties’ success props up/extends leader growth
      • Figure 21: Sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by company, 2021 and 2022
    • Wells and Mars riding novelty high
    • Blue bunny load’d fun
      • Figure 22: Wells’ Blue Bunny novelty launches, 2021-22
    • Snickers and Twix find sweet spot between classic and inventive
      • Figure 23: Mars’ Snickers and Twix cooking inspiration/recipes, 2021
      • Figure 24: Multi-outlet sales of frozen novelties, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
    • Häagen-Dazs is a bright spot among struggling tub brands
      • Figure 25: Consumer perceptions of Häagen-Dazs tub ice cream launches 2021-22
      • Figure 26: Häagen-Dazs “Luxury is where you are” spot
      • Figure 27: Multi-outlet sales of ice cream, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
    • Ben & Jerry’s overtakes So Delicious as leading frozen yogurt/non-dairy brand
      • Figure 28: Consumer perceptions of Ben & Jerry’s non-dairy launches, 2017-22
      • Figure 29: Multi-outlet sales of frozen yogurt/non-dairy, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
    • Talenti is filling the gaps in the sherbet, sorbet, and ices segment
      • Figure 30: Talenti Sorbetto products, 2022
      • Figure 31: Multi-outlet sales of sherbet/sorbet/ices, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
  7. Competitive Strategies and Market Opportunities

    • Addressing ethical demands requires formality and fun in frozen treats
      • Figure 32: Frozen treats with ethical certificates, 2022
      • Figure 33: Mars Net Zero commitment, 2022
    • Snack-inspired formats, flavors and pairings
      • Figure 34: Snack-inspired frozen treat launches, 2021
      • Figure 35: Hudsonville and Little Debbie partnership, 2022
    • Packaged frozen treat, doctored up
      • Figure 36: Cooking attitudes, 2021
      • Figure 37: Frozen treat cooking and customization, 2022
    • Trending concept: beverage blurring
      • Figure 38: Alcohol-inspired frozen treat launches, 2022
      • Figure 39: Coffee inspired frozen treat launches, 2022
      • Figure 40: Outshine Raspberry Mimosa, 2021
    • Flavor spotlight: a taste of Mexico
      • Figure 41: Mexican brand/style frozen treat launches, 2021
      • Figure 42: Experience and interest in dessert and confection flavors, 2021
  8. The Ice Cream and Frozen Novelties Consumer – Fast Facts

    • Ice cream (tubs/cartons) attracts the most consumers – for now
    • Healthy alternatives are not sought by the mainstream frozen treat shopper
    • Retail is the primary frozen treat purchase location, challenged to avoid loss in the context of the “Enddemic”
    • Consumers crave quality and exciting flavors and formats, even when it costs them more
  9. Frozen Treat Types Purchased

    • Ice cream tubs maintain far lead, premium brands can defend title
    • Foot race to third place, fruit flavors can help differentiate
      • Figure 43: Frozen treat category purchased, 2022
    • Young males can further develop small segments
      • Figure 44: Frozen treat type purchased, by gender and age, 2022
    • Novelty purchases emphasize value in variety
    • Plant-based more developed in novelties
      • Figure 45: Frozen treat type purchased, 2022
  10. Frozen Treat Health Attitudes and Attributes

    • Fewer than half of buyers would like to see healthier treats
      • Figure 46: Frozen treat health attitudes, 2022
    • Non-dairy users want comparable indulgence
    • Affluent households, middle-aged men stand out for healthy interest
      • Figure 47: Interest in healthier frozen treats, 2022
      • Figure 48: Interest in healthier frozen treats, 2022
    • Healthier swaps are lower sugar and fruit flavored
      • Figure 49: Health attributes, 2022
  11. Frozen Treat Purchase Location and Associations

    • Retail leads, challenged to avoid leakage to foodservice
      • Figure 50: Purchase location, 2022
    • Younger adults love hitting the scoop shop
      • Figure 51: Purchase location, by generation, 2022
    • Ice cream parlors attract parents
      • Figure 52: Purchase location, by parent status, 2022
    • Everyday occasion advantage goes to packaged brands
      • Figure 53: Purchase location associations, correspondence analysis, 2022
      • Figure 54: Purchase location associations, 2022
    • The QSR opportunity
  12. Motivating Purchase – Concepts and Flavors

    • Leading innovation of interest points to preference for quality
      • Figure 55: Motivating purchase – Concepts, 2022
      • Figure 56: Interest in premium, by financial situation, 2022
    • Adherence to snacking and work-from-home treats
      • Figure 57: Motivating purchase – Select concepts, by work-from-home status, 2022
    • Young consumers can drive niche innovation
      • Figure 58: Motivating purchase – Select concepts, by generation, 2022
    • In general, consumers are more motivated by flavors than concepts
      • Figure 59: Motivating purchase – Flavors, 2022
    • Leading flavor of interest highlights foodservice impact
    • Glean flavor inspo from other areas of the store
    • Retail as an everyday, seasonal destination
  13. Purchase Attributes

    • Far and away, flavor drives frozen treat purchases
      • Figure 60: Frozen treat purchase attributes, 2022
    • Brands loyalty has room to grow in frozen treats
    • Influence of environmental initiatives is niche in frozen treats
      • Figure 61: Frozen treat purchase attributes, by generation, 2022
    • Fewer than two in 10 consider nutrition when purchasing frozen treats
  14. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Sales data
    • Forecast
    • Consumer survey data
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations
  15. Appendix – The Market

      • Figure 62: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 63: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 64: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream and frozen novelties, by segment, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 65: Average annual household spending on ice cream and frozen novelties, 2016-21
      • Figure 66: Total US retail sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by segment, at current prices, 2019 and 2021
      • Figure 67: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 68: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen novelties, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 69: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 70: Total US retail sales and forecast of ice cream, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 71: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen yogurt/non-dairy, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 72: Total US retail sales and forecast of frozen yogurt/non-dairy, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 73: Total US retail sales and forecast of sherbet/sorbet/ices, at current prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 74: Total US retail sales and forecast of sherbet/sorbet/ices, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2016-26
      • Figure 75: Total US retail sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by channel, at current prices, 2016-21
      • Figure 76: Total US retail sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by channel, at current prices, 2019 and 2021
      • Figure 77: US supermarket sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, at current prices, 2016-21
      • Figure 78: US sales of ice cream and frozen novelties through other retail channels, at current prices, 2016-21
  16. Appendix – Companies and Brands

      • Figure 79: Multi-outlet sales of ice cream and frozen novelties, by leading companies, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
      • Figure 80: Multi-outlet sales of frozen novelties, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
      • Figure 81: Multi-outlet sales of ice cream, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
      • Figure 82: Multi-outlet sales of frozen yogurt/non-dairy, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022
      • Figure 83: Multi-outlet sales of sherbet/sorbet/ices, by leading companies and brands, rolling 52 weeks 2021 and 2022

About the report

This market report provides in-depth analysis and insight supported by a range of data. At the same time, introductory and top-level content is provided to give you an overview of the issues covered.

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Data

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