Americans will spend over $20 billion (€20.3bn) dollars on ice cream, frozen desserts and frozen novelties this year - $2 billion more than was spent just five years ago, states a new report released this week.
The report, published by Packaged Facts, suggests that the boost in spending is largely due to an increase in demand for high-end, gourmet products, not increased volume sales. Americans are not eating more frozen desserts - they are simply spending more on the desserts they eat.
"Ice cream and frozen desserts are luxury items," said Don Montuori, Acquisition Editor for Packaged Facts. "More than almost any other food category this product is seen as something that we can live without, but would prefer not to. As affordable indulgences go, a pint of premium ice cream tops the list for many Americans."
According to the report, health concerns may be at an all time high in the United States, but consumer trends indicate that full-fat versions of indulgence foods, such as ice cream and cookies, are as popular as ever. A sentiment echoed across the food industry.
"We saw this when we released our cookies study last month, so we weren't surprised to find the same trend in the ice cream market," said Montuori. "People are allowing themselves small indulgences in their eating patterns. The fact is that most people do not eat enough ice cream so that eating low-fat would make a significant impact on their health."