Ice, ice baby

Magnum is the number one adult indulgent ice cream brand in the impulse sector
Magnum is the number one adult indulgent ice cream brand in the impulse sector

Experts say we’re in for a good summer, which is good news for ice-cream sales, but in any case new innovations are offering greater potential for the product to be eaten at more occasions


Brand Central

15 April 2009

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At a glance: ICE CREAM

  • The Irish ice cream market is valued at approx €125m (excl. Dunnes Stores)
  • The “out of home impulse singles” market is worth R65m; Unilever holds a market share of 80.4% in this segment
  • The “take home” segment is worth €60m (+0.3%), Unilever holds a market share of 70.1 % (AC Nielsen, Total Market excl Dunnes Stores, Value, MAT FEB 22 2009)
  • HB is market leader with 77.4% value market share (AC Nielsen bi-month market track to 2 November 2008)
  • Multipack continues to grow with a 3% value growth
  • Magnum Minis have gained a share of 4% in multipacks since launching
  • Magnum is the number one adult indulgent ice cream brand in the impulse sector with a 57% market share
  • The top five sellers in multipack represent almost 30% of multipack value sales
  • This super premium sector grew 4% in value and volume in 2009
  • Ben & Jerry’s has grown 10% in value YOY
  • Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food remains the number one seller followed by Ben & Jerry’s Choc Fudge Brownie (AC Neilsen Mat 22nd Feb 2009)
  • The total soft ice-cream market grew by almost 67% from €31 million in 2001 to €50 million in 2008

*Statistics provided by HB


“The primary challenge for the ice cream market is to grow occasions outside the summer months,” says market analyst Mintel. Innovations from the ice cream industry have raised its game in order to meet the challenge, with health-focused fruity products, packaging innovations and ‘mini’ formats ensuring that ice cream has the potential to be eaten at more occasions, instead of yogurts, breakfast bars, chocolates or cookies.

Research by HB icecream has also found that Ireland has the third highest ice cream consumption per capita in Europe, after Sweden and Finland. And in a recent study, 85% of Irish parents said they give their kids treat foods once a day or less, but ice cream was the most popular as they believe it’s the healthier choice. What’s more, over half of Irish nutritionists surveyed said that ice cream can be eaten once or twice a week as part of a balanced diet.

Luxury bite after bite

Magnum ice cream is the number one adult indulgent ice cream brand in the impulse sector, with 57% market share. For 2009 Magnum is launching Magnum Temptation Caramel & Almonds; milk chocolate with Madagascan vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce and Californian almonds encased in Belgian dark chocolate. The Magnum Temptation range is presented in a jewellery box style pack, and Magnum also has a distinctive new sensual shape.

Magnum has an on pack “pleasure card” promotion, which will drive increased frequency of purchase from 1 April to 30 June. Consumers will have the chance to win part of a €1m prize fund with Mastercard pleasure cards. The cards are pre-loaded with cash and every hour there will be 14 €10 cards, 10 €20 cards and one €50 card won, as well as two €1,000 prizes every day. The pleasure card promotion applies to Magnum Classic and White impulse, and multipack.

HB has boosted its kids range this year with an Ice Age promotion and new Smile Gum product

HB has boosted its kids range this year with an Ice Age promotion and new Smile Gum product

From little acorns…

New product developments in children’s ice cream from HB this year include a Lemon Age lolly. This flavour combination will tie in with Ice Age 3, the blockbuster movie of summer 2009. Lemon Age is a lemon flavour ice lolly with a lemon flavour ice cream core and cola flavour jelly pieces. Children can bite through the ice and discover a cola flavour acorn. Like the rest of
the HB kids range, Lemon Age lolly contains no artificial colours and flavours.

HB has also created Smile Gum; smiley face strawberry and chewing gum flavour ice cream, with chewing gum as an added treat. To ensure that HB provides the best ice cream in the market, it is currently removing any artificial colours and flavours from its kids ice creams and moving to all natural.


A taste of the Caribbean

HB makes the Calippos range with fruit juice, which is reassuring for consumers to know that the popular kid’s range is made without artificial colours and flavours. Calippo lollies have been designed to be a fun proposition, bringing a sense of summer all year round.

Calippo Shots ice drops come in a handy, no-mess portable container and are a marketed as a refreshing thirst quencher. For 2009, HB is introducing New Calippo Shots Strawberry & Lemon, which is a mixture of 50% strawberry shots and 50% lemon shots with only 25 kcals per pack.




A state of awe and Rapture

Dale Farm ice cream is continuing to drive the market by expanding its product range in the adult impulse sector, with its own range of luxury Rapture products. Using the finest quality vanilla dairy ice cream and Belgian chocolate, sales of Rapture have grown considerably since its launch three years ago. Building on the initial success of the Mint and Almond variants, and the Strawberry Cone, Dale Farm then launched the Rapture Minis take home pack, providing customers with a range of products to enjoy straight from the freezer at home. Rapture Honeycomb Cone is latest addition to the range.

Dale Farm also provides value through its new price flashed pint bricks in both Vanilla and Raspberry Ripple, marked at €1.59. Market leading brands, award winning standards of service and excellent marketing support for customers guarantees that Dale Farm Ice Cream will continue to improve on an already strong performance. Other products from Dale Farm include: the new Nestle Kit Kat Cone, the new Cadburys Fruit and Nut Stick, Choc Pop, Mr Frostie, Pear Picking Porkie, Joker and Polly Pineapple.


Cones of class

The Irish Cone & Wafer Co is a long-standing Irish supplier of premium cone and wafer products. The company, established since 1944, introduced a full packaging rebrand for its launch last month, creating a fresh and up-to-date new look for the Irish Cone & Wafer Co brand. The new logo illustrates the heritage of this Irish brand, combined with a colourful palette to create a fun and modern packaging format. The Irish Cone & Wafer Co packaging launch will be supported by in-store POS solutions.


Beyond the Pail

Silver Pail Dairy, located in Fermoy Co Cork, has been manufacturing ice-cream since 1978 and has since grown to be the largest ice-cream manufacturer in Ireland. The company supplies ice-cream and frozen desserts to the Irish and UK retail and wholesale trade. Silver Pail is the main supplier of own brand label ice-cream to the Irish retail market and manufactures products for Thornton’s Chocolate and Baskin Robbins.

In 2004 the company turned its attention to supply the Irish consumer with a high quality full dairy ice-cream under the name Corrin Hill. The ice-cream comes in four flavours; Creamy Vanilla, Ripply Strawberry, Sticky Toffee and Saucy Chocolate Chip. In 2007 a fat free frozen yoghurt was added to the range. Corrin Hill has nationwide distribution.

This year Silver Pail has launched two new stick lines to accompany its existing impulse lines. The two new products, the Zoom pop and Red Devil pop will join the Rocket pop, Choc Ice, Lemon and Lime pop and Orange Split as Irish favourites.  They are a low price/high margin offering for the consumer and the retailer, to suit the economic climate this summer.


Smooching up together

Soft serve ice cream margins are up as high as 80%, says Dairyglen, creator of the Smooch concept. Smooch was the first to tag on to the successful McFlurry phenonmenon, introducing the concept to the retailer back in 2002. It offered a branded unit complete with back lit menus, giving stores an instant ice cream parlour. The traditional whipped cone was now joined by a Smooch, which is ice cream blended with chocolates, marshmallows and other children’s favourites. Ice cream sundaes and milkshakes were also on the menu. According to Smooch, the concept delivered impressive sales.

This year Smooch launches new branding and a ‘deluxe’ option for those who love premium ice cream, sourcing original Italian artesian ice cream flavours to blend with dairy ice cream. Smooch says it can provide everything retailers need for a successful ice cream segment, either an off-the-shelf mini ice cream parlour or a custom-designed and fitted unit. Smooch supplies and manages all products and marketing from its warehouses in Dublin and Cork, and delivers nationwide. The Smooch Brand is owned by Dairyglen, a family business looking after customers in Ireland since 1991. n


Questions and answers with…


Colette Reid

Marketing manager, HB Ice Cream

How important is ongoing product development within the ice-cream category?

Extremely important, Ireland has the third highest ice cream consumption in Europe and demand only the best from the product range. Our two main categories, out-of-home impulse singles and take-home continue to develop and expand to ensure we consistently meet our customer’s needs.

What have been the most important innovations within this category recently?

We have recently introduced key impulse lines into our HB Hazelbrook Farm range such as HB Hazelbrook Farm Brunch and HB Hazelbrook Farm Ice Berger. Also, we continue to ensure our ice cream has become healthier over the past number of years. Not everyone’s is as wholesome,  most competitors’ ice cream is made using reconstituted milk powder.

How have you met the challenge of growing usage occasions outside the summer months?

That really comes back to the contents of our product and the product range available.  Our wide offering and distribution ensures that HB ice cream is chosen and enjoyed throughout the year. We are lucky HB holds a special place on the heart of the Irish, something we don’t take for granted. The fact that it offers the consumer value for money all year round also makes HB a popular choice for all.

Would you agree that children’s consumption has been falling, and if so, how can this be counteracted? 

Yes and no. We are fortunate that our products are very popular with children. Also, we find that parents are choosing HB ice cream over private label brands and other snack products as the healthier snacking alternative…Most of our ice-cream is also free from artificial flavours.

Sarah Hogan

Brand manager, Ben & Jerry’s

How important is ongoing product development within the ice-cream category?

Very important! Especially in this climate when people are more inclined to stay in and treat themselves, having new and exciting treats is even more relevant. Moreover, it’s also critical that as part of product development, brands are reflecting on what consumers want and increasingly that equates to ethical, responsible partnerships with their farmers.

What have been the most important innovations within this category recently?

Chocolate Macadamia has just been launched in the Irish market and is Ben & Jerry’s first globally released flavour using fair and sustainably sourced ingredients. We plan to expand our Fairtrade offerings as business conditions allow and are currently working with numerous suppliers to work out an ambitious plan to accelerate this expansion

How have you met the challenge of growing usage occasions outside the summer months?

Ben & Jerry’s is actually a brand that people enjoy pretty evenly across the year. It is largely consumed at home so it is less affected by seasonality than other ice cream brands. That said, we recognise that people might want slightly different products around the year so have just launched a low fat ice cream range that is perfect for summer.





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