After lockdown restrictions negatively impacting the current value sales of ice cream and frozen desserts in 2020, the easing of restrictions will allow the category to recover to pre-pandemic levels in 2021. Different sub-categories were differently impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns, however, with their sales performances likely to vary in 2021 as a result.
Ice cream continues to see new product developments in various health and wellness areas, including dairy-free, low-calorie and vegan variants, as well as protein- or vitamin-fortified ice cream. One of the biggest disruptors of Irish ice cream remains Halo Top, which offers a variety of low-calorie ice cream.
Unilever Ireland Ltd, manufacturer of well-known brands including Magnum, Ben & Jerry’s and Cornetto, continues to dominate ice cream and frozen desserts in terms of value share in 2021. The company’s rapid reaction to the latest trends remains highly appealing to customers.
As the restrictions are expected to continue to ease over the forecast period, impulse ice cream will see a surge in demand again, with sales of this product area being hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Health concerns around unpackaged products will decrease, leading Irish customers to treat themselves with unpacked on-the-go ice cream on hot summer days, in particular.
The trend of premiumisation already heavily impacted ice cream before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it further accelerated with home seclusion during lockdowns, as consumers turned to higher quality ice cream and frozen desserts as an indulgence.
The rise of health and wellness ice cream, such as dairy-free and sugar- or fat-reduced alternatives, is expected to increase competition between frozen yoghurt and ice cream in the forecast period. As ice cream is well-established and more mature than frozen yoghurt, customers will be more likely to opt for it in healthier versions, rather than buying frozen yoghurt.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Ice Cream and Frozen Desserts industry in Ireland with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Ice Cream and Frozen Desserts research and analysis database.
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