Dessert market in Europe - Statistics and Facts

Ice cream and other frozen desserts are popular all year round in Germany. No wonder that this Western European country represents Europe’s largest market for ice cream, with a combined sales value of over 1.3 billion euros in 2013/2014. Italy, Europe’s second-largest market, followed with nearly one billion euros that year. Other important ice cream markets include the United Kingdom, Spain and France, with a sales value of between 940 and 840 million euros each.


In terms of value, the frozen dessert market is worth approximately half of the ice cream market. Here too Germany is the most important market in Europe, with an approximate sales value of 590 million euros in 2013/2014. The UK followed at a respectable distance, with roughly 212 million euros. Considerably less frozen desserts were sold in France (sales value of 72 million euros), Italy (29 million), the Netherlands (20 million) and Spain (8 million).

Together, Germans ate 560,000 metric tons of ice cream and nearly 210,000 metric tons of frozen desserts in 2015, a European record. For comparison: Italians ate 440,000 tons of ice cream, and 6,200 tons of frozen desserts, whereas the British ate 430,000 and 103,000 tons of ice cream and frozen desserts respectively. The per capita consumption of ice cream was slightly higher in Denmark, with an average of 6.5 liters per person in 2014, compared to Germany’s 6.2 liters.

Even though Germany is Europe’s largest market for ice cream and other frozen desserts, the increase in retail sales volume was strongest in Spain in 2015, with a growth of two percent. Increase in the sales volume was nearly as impressive in Germany, with 1.9 percent. That year, the sales volume in France and Italy grew by only 0.1 percent, signaling that not all of the larger European markets grow equally fast.

Germans do not only eat a lot of ice cream, they also produce a lot of ice cream. In 2016, the production volume was 330,000 tons, a decrease of roughly 40,000 tons in comparison to 2014. That year, the revenue in the German ice cream production sector amounted to approximately 1.10 billion euros. By 2016, despite the decreasing production of ice cream, revenues had increased to over 1.12 billion euros.

In the United Kingdom, approximately 260,000 liters of ice cream were manufactured in 2016, a decrease of roughly 175,000 liters in comparison to 2009. At the same time, the import of ice cream increased between 2001 and 2015, from roughly 112 to 186 million British pounds. The export of ice cream also more than doubled in this period, from 47 to 91 million British pounds. The sales value of frozen desserts in the UK in 2014 was roughly 855 million British pounds. Most popular frozen dessert products were choc snacks, responsible for about one-quarter of the total sales value, followed by premium desserts and luxury desserts (170.7 and 116.9 million British pounds, respectively).

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Frozen desserts in the United Kingdom (UK) - Important statistics

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