Regardless of weather, ice cream remains one of the most popular treats year-round in the United States. Whether it comes in a cone, in a bowl, or in disposable ice cream cups, here are some cool facts on one of America’s favorite treats!
The Most Popular Treat in the Nation
On average, Americans tend to eat ice cream or similar frozen treats over 28 times per year. Research by the market research company NPD Group found that 40% of Americans will eat ice cream in any given two-week period — this is more frequently than cakes, pies, and similar deserts.
Ice Cream Around the Country
Every year there are about 1.5 billion gallons of frozen deserts produced the U.S. every year. The number of ice cream parlors and frozen yogurt shops is increasing; by the end of 2013 there were an estimated 2,582 stores dedicated to frozen yogurt alone. The International Ice Cream Association determined that vanilla is and has been the most popular flavor according to its member companies; other popular flavors include chocolate, cookies and cream, mint chocolate chip, and cookie dough ice cream.
Ice Cream, Frozen Yogurt, and Gelato
While all three of these are similar, there are significant differences. Frozen yogurt replaces the cream used to make ice cream with yogurt, resulting in a product that generally has less fat and calories than traditional ice cream. Gelato is Italian for “ice cream,” but is different as it contains less milk fat and 25-30% air from the churning process — ice cream in contrast has over 50% air, making it less dense by comparison. Due to the popularity of the treat, many shops have created personalized cups for ice cream to suit their individual needs. Some of the cups for ice cream include dividers and lids to change the way that Americans enjoy their favorite frozen treats.