Ice cream production in the European Union saw a 9% year-on-year decline in 2020, to around 2.9 billion litres, a new report has revealed.
Eurostat has compiled a report examining the performance of the European ice cream manufacturing industry, analysing the sector's biggest markets and producers.
Ice Cream Imports And Exports
In 2020, EU member states exported 232 million kilograms of ice cream worth €752 million to non-EU countries.
In addition, imports of ice cream from countries outside the EU amounted to 79 million kilograms, valued at €182 million.
While the quantity of extra-EU ice cream imports declined by 4% compared with 2019, exports increased by 5% year on year.
France exported 59 million kilograms of ice cream in 2020, accounting for 25% of extra-EU ice cream exports and emerging as the leading ice cream exporter among the EU Member States.
The Netherlands secured the second spot, with exports amounting to 38 million kilograms, or 16% of total extra-EU exports.
Germany exported 29 million kilograms, accounting for 13% of extra-EU exports, while Italy exported 20 million kilograms (9% of extra-EU exports).
At 16 million kilograms, Belgium's ice cream exports comprised 7% of total extra-EU exports.
Top Ice-Cream Producers
Among the EU Member States, Germany was the top producer of ice cream in 2020 at 642 million litres.
France emerged in the second position with a production volume of 516 million litres (2019 data), followed by Italy at 509 million litres.
As well as being the largest ice cream producer in 2020, Germany produced the cheapest ice cream on average, at €1.30 per litre.
France reported the highest price, at €2.20 per litre, (2019 data), closely followed by Italy, with an average price of €2.00 per litre of ice cream.
The ice cream industry is constantly adapting and developing based on consumers' needs, with Coop Switzerland the latest European retailer to offer vegan ice cream, in an attempt to appeal to both vegans and those with lactose intolerance.
Earlier this year, Italian confectionery company Ferrero launched ice cream sticks in France in three varieties – Raffaello and Ferrero Rocher in dark and classic variants.