We all scream for ice cream

HB's Magnum Infinity - the ultimate Magnum experience made with rare Tanzanian cocoa and scattered with cocoa nibs
HB's Magnum Infinity - the ultimate Magnum experience made with rare Tanzanian cocoa and scattered with cocoa nibs

The ice cream impulse market is a cash cow for retailers as it delivers higher value margins compared with other categories. Fiona Donnellan looks at the must haves coming into the summer season


Brand Central

16 April 2013

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  • The ice cream market is estimated to be worth €120 million in Ireland
  • Ireland is the third biggest consumer of ice cream in Europe
  • The impulse ice cream category in Ireland is valued at 45% of the total impulse market, the total market is worth €48.5 million
  • Overall, the ice cream category has a high market penetration at 89.2%, is regarded as an ‘affordable indulgence’ and fits with the increasing levels of home entertainment taking place*
  • HB is the market leader with 74.7% total market share**
  • Almost 70% of ice cream is purchased on impulse
  • The take home market is valued at €59 million***
  • HB products account for 18 of the 20 top sellers in the Irish market **
  • An ice cream impulse shopper spends more per purchase than the average convenience store shopper
  • Frozen yogurt is experiencing an upsurge in popularity in Ireland as people seek healthier alternatives to calorie laden desserts
  • Novelty character lollies recorded a 64% incremental sales increase in the ice cream category in 2012
  • Kerrymaid Angelito sells over 33 million ice creams per year
  • Donegal based company, Irish Cone and Wafer, was founded in 1944 and is the oldest and largest manufacturer of cone and wafer products in Ireland

*(Source: Bord Bia Report 2009)
**(Source: MAT Nielson Sept/Oct 2012)
***(Source: MAT Nielson Nov 2012)

HB's Magnum Infinity - the ultimate Magnum experience made with rare Tanzanian cocoa and scattered with cocoa nibs

HB’s Magnum Infinity – the ultimate Magnum experience made with rare Tanzanian cocoa and scattered with cocoa nibs

Something for all the family

It may be difficult to imagine Ireland having a summer this year, given the weather over the last number of weeks, but avoid it though we may, the season is fast approaching. Despite the absence of summer weather in 2012, ice cream sales grew in bursts. With over 80 years experience, HB is the market leader for ice cream in Ireland. HB products include the classic favourites such as Brunch and Ice Berger along with global brands like Magnum and Cornetto. Maintaining excitement in the ice cream category is also all about continuous innovation and launching new products to the range. HB’s ice cream range appeals to audiences of all ages. From the exciting new kids products Dracula and Dino Candy to Cornetto Enigma Popcorn and the new creamy Big Bite, HB has it covered.


2013 will also see the introduction of two new Core flavours and a new Classic to the Ben & Jerry’s range – Core-azy. Ben & Jerry’s is the clear market leader with 60% value of the super premium market (Source: AC Nielson). The Core range has proved extremely popular with consumers since its launch last year. The brand is building on this success with the introduction of two brand new flavours; Peanut Butter Me Up tips its hat to the wonder that is peanut butter and jelly sandwiches while Blondie Brownie redefines brownie overload.

In a table of the top 20 selling ice creams in Ireland, HB products account for the top 18. Among the top 10 are Iceberger, Brunch, Choc Ice, Loop The Loop and Twister. The Magnum range is developing from the Classic to the Infinity Chocolate and Caramel – the ultimate Magnum experience that stays with you for longer. Changes to the extremely popular Cornetto range include crunchier chocolate, richer strawberry, more nuts and white chocolate curls. A new wrapper has been developed for ease of use with no paper left on the ice cream and no mess. A new flavour is set for release this year, the Cornetto Enigma Popcorn.


HB also caters for non dairy customers with its range of lactose and gluten free non dairy frozen dessert – Swedish Glace. This perfect alternative to ice cream includes Divine Chocolate, Juicy Raspberry, Smooth Vanilla and the classic Neapolitan flavours. The whole range is lactose and gluten free, as well as being suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

Firm favourites

As one of Ireland’s leading ice cream companies offering a stable of market leading brands, Dale Farm is an ideal partner to ensure you make the most of your freezer this summer. The Dale Farm portfolio includes brands such as Nestle,

Mars and Cadbury along with Dale Farm favourites such as Mars, Snickers, Ice Break, Choc Ice, Cadbury’s Dairy Milk, Flake Cone, Fruit Screamers and Smarties pop up. With customers searching for value, Dale Farm has introduced a new range of €1 flashed products including Rapture Mint and Rapture Vanilla; indulgent stick bars made from real dairy ice cream and enrobed in Belgian chocolate. There’s an extra margin opportunity of two free bars with every case purchased as well as a new €1 Lion bar.

Additional products, new to the range for this season include a Disney branded Mickey lolly, Sukie squeeze up; a water ice based orange squeeze up product and two new value multipacks; a Mr and Mrs Frostie vanilla and strawberry lolly 10 pack and a Sukie lemon and lime and orange 10 pack. With branded freezers available free on loan and an expert category management service, Dale Farm can ensure maximum return from your freezer this summer season.

Family fun

With an estimated market of €120 million, Ireland is the third biggest consumer 

Kerrymaid Angelito sells over 33 million ice creams per year

Kerrymaid Angelito sells over 33 million ice creams per year

of ice cream in Europe, yet ice cream desserts still remain a largely untapped source of revenue by operators. With its same great creamy dairy taste, new packaging and supporting POS, now is the time to stock up on Ireland’s favourite soft ice cream, Kerrymaid Angelito – which sells over 33 million ice creams per year. Recent consumer research showed that ice cream sundaes can drive unplanned sales during various parts of the day and increase profits for retailers. Over half of the respondents agreed that ice cream sundaes are great on their own, without a meal, and 40% could see themselves having a sundae instead of a cake or other snack.

The Angelito brand appeals to the whole family and with the option of serving ice cream in a tub, shake or dessert with toppings, inclusions and treats, it is perfect for a wide range of outlets. The sole distributor in Ireland, Martin Food Equipment, offers strong customer support including supplying Kerrymaid Angelito POS; including swing signs, flags, bunting, large six foot cones and posters so operators can stimulate spontaneous purchases.

Kerrymaid Angelito provides the highest amount of cone yield per case, meaning maximum profit margin for retailers. As part of the Kerrymaid portfolio, wholesalers, retailers and operators can be assured of the best quality and product innovation from a trusted company, renowned for its dairy heritage. For more information, contact Martin Food Equipment on 1850 303636.

Energise your sales

The ice cream market, while not completely recession proof, tends to be quite resistant. As the economy has been on the downfall, dining out is being replaced with affordable treats. The trend of ‘milkshake bars’ reached Ireland last year, with shakes being the coolest product on the ice cream market. In order to assist shops to capitalise on the milkshake opportunity, Smooch launched a ‘shake bar’ area for the retail format. Introducing the express concept of a milkshake bar in-store was a response to the increasing demand for an affordable treat on-the-go. This year, Smooch is set to revolutionise the ice cream market with the introduction of its shake bar areas. Smooch’s rapid growth is due to its striking visual appeal, creative marketing programmes and superior menu line up. Each Smooch location features a menu of real dairy whipped ice cream, toppings, mix-ins and sauces.

Each Smooch location offers a wide range of products

Each Smooch location offers a wide range of products

Retailers that have incorporated the Smooch shake bar into their business are reporting excellent sales. Centra Store of the Year 2012, Cross’ in Naas County Kildare, says its kiosk can take in up to €2,300 per week depending on the weather. Smooch was the first to offer Irish retailers a branded ice cream unit, giving stores an instant parlour and the company is constantly adapting in response to changing trends and customer preference.

As summer kicks into full gear customers are looking for a cool treat and a cone filled with real dairy ice cream is the essence of summer. A delicious experience like this keeps customers coming back again and again. Smooch offers customers a premium product that isn’t expensive. For information on how your store can benefit from a Smooch unit, contact Dairyglen Products Ltd. on 1890 200052.

Moo’ve over for Chilly Moo 

Frozen yogurt is experiencing an upsurge in popularity in Ireland as people seek healthier alternatives to their usual fat and calorie laden desserts. A product riding this wave of popularity is the Irish frozen yogurt, Chilly Moo. Chilly Moo is 100% unique; a completely natural frozen yogurt sweetened only with real fruit and fruit juices. In short, it is a healthy but just as delicious alternative to ice cream. Originally launched for the children’s market, Chilly Moo’s healthy attributes have also attracted a strong secondary market of health conscious adults, slimmers and coeliacs.

Chilly Moo has a number of benefits including the fact that it’s made in Ireland; made with whole milk, yogurt and unsweetened fruit puree; it has a high fruit content (19%); it has no artificial additives, preservatives or colourings; low fat (less than 3%); low GI and gluten free. Chilly Moo’s branding is both eye catching and funky to attract children and adults alike. The company was founded by Joanna Lovegrove and Clare Holman who have been friends forever and have five children between them. They came up with the concept for Chilly Moo when they were looking for a nutritious yet still delicious frozen treat for their children and found little choice on the shelves.

Chilly Moo comes in three flavours; strawberry, mixed berry and banana and strawberry. A fourth flavour, vanilla, is in the pipeline and should be hitting the shelves in the coming months.

Chilly Moo

Chilly Moo is available nationwide and can be delivered to your premises at least once a week in a variety of sizes. There is a 500ml tub, which comes in single flavour cases of 12, perfect for families sharing at home. 120ml spoon-in-lid tubs are ideal for the grab-and-go market, available in single or mixed flavour cases of 36. The frozen yogurt also comes in a two litre catering tub for the food service market.

New attractions


R&R Ice Cream continues to invest in the category and is headlining this summer’s ice cream launches with the introduction of a range of exciting new products for the whole family. The manufacturer is bolstering its Nestlé offering by miniaturising the Milkybar and Nobbly Bobbly products to create Minis; its first branded entry into the handheld mini sector.

New addition Milkybar Minis featuring creamy Milkybar ice cream dipped in a generous layer of Milkybar chocolate

New addition Milkybar Minis featuring creamy Milkybar ice cream dipped in a generous layer of Milkybar chocolate

Available in a pack of 10, Milkybar Minis is made with all natural ingredients and features Milkybar ice cream dipped in a generous layer of Milkybar chocolate. The number one take home kids treat brand (Source: AC Nielson) Nobbly Bobbly is the second in the three strong line up of Nestlé Minis. Available in a mixed pack of 10, the classic strawberry and chocolate flavour is joined by a brand new variant; vanilla and chocolate.

R&R will add incremental value to the ice cream category by appealing to existing fans as well as those looking for a smaller treat. Charlotte Hambling, senior marketing manager, says: "The Nestlé Minis range is a particularly exciting addition to our Nestlé portfolio. Our research has shown that consumers are on the hunt for a less calorific treat that also offers value for money. Nestlé Minis tick all of those boxes for the family audience."


R&R will also introduce a new Mickey Mouse shaped ice cream stick to the category for this year. The Disney brand offers R&R a chance to attack kids novelty competitors with the biggest brand in this area. With new products coming on stream, along with the ever popular products like Fruit Screamers, R&R has something for everyone with a great range of impulse and take home packs.

Established winners

Some of the range available from Fredericks Dairies including the new addition to the family - Oreo Cone 4 Pack

Some of the range available from Fredericks Dairies including the new addition to the family – Oreo Cone 4 Pack

Fredericks Dairies is the second largest manufacturer of ice cream products with brands such as Cadbury, Britvic, Del Monte and Vimto among its portfolio. 2012 was its most successful year to date, due in part to Cadbury’s ice cream presence at the London Olympics. This high profile presence drove mass exposure and trial across a mixed demographic of consumers which has laid the foundations for growth in 2013 and beyond.

New products, brought online last year have contributed to category growth. Fredericks began manufacturing and marketing Britvic Soft Drink-branded iced refreshment products under a 10 year licensing agreement. The two products launched, Fruit Shoot squeeze-ups and R Whites Lemonade Ice Lollies, both surpassed forecasts in their first 12 months on sale.

Fredericks Dairies is particularly strong within chocolate sticks and filled cones thanks to Cadbury Dairy Milk, the new Cadbury Nuts About Caramel, Cadbury Crunchie Blast and Cadbury Flake 99. Cadbury Dairy Milk saw huge growth in 2012 demonstrating a 192% value increase. Cadbury Flake 99 also boasts the highest cash rate of sale within the category for retailers and benefits from the nation’s love of the iconic 99 ice cream serve, making it a must-stock SKU for the freezer.

Fredericks will be adopting a single minded strategy of focusing on a core range of six hero products under household brands – Cadbury Dairy Milk (eur*1.90), Cadbury Nuts About Caramel (eur*1.80), Cadbury Flake 99 (eur*1.90), Cadbury Crunchie Blast (eur*1.90), R Whites Lemonade and Robinsons Fruit Shoot (eur*1.20) as well as introducing new products to maintain excitement and interest within the category.

One of the new products launched this year is the brand new Oreo ice cream. The number one biscuit brand in the world has partnered with Fredericks and the Oreo Cone Four Pack is now available to retailers and is one of the most significant launches into the ice cream cone sub-category in years. The launch will be supported by a targeted marketing campaign that includes extensive national sampling throughout May and June designed to drive trial and awareness.

Fredericks provides a full-rounded solution for retailers to make the most of their impulse ice cream offering. Retailers should be prepared so that when the good weather begins, they are fully stocked as the category is one of the most impulsive in stores. With this in mind, getting the right ice cream range merchandised in the correct way is crucial. Price marked packs (PMPs) are a good way to capitalise on the take home ice cream opportunity as they ensure freezer standout and reassure consumers on price. PMPs work well in multipack formats as they offer consumers low prices, drive sales and increase the number of consumers who buy ice creams and ices.

Going together hand in hand

Irish ice cream consumers love nothing more than eating their frozen treats from cones or sandwiched between wafers. Despite our temperate climate and some of the worst summers on record in recent years, we remain one of the largest consumers of the product in the world. With the expectation of warmer weather and brighter evenings ahead, now is the ideal time to stock up on cone and wafer products to capitalise on this great sales opportunity.

Donegal based company Irish Cone and Wafer has a long affiliation with Ireland’s ice cream consumers and is the largest manufacturer of cone and wafer products in Ireland. Founded in 1944, the company produces a wide range of products under the ‘Cool’ Wafers, Cup and Cones branding as well as Wrapped Wafers brands.

Irish Cone and Wafer also offers bulk catering cones under the ‘Superb’ Cones brand to retailers and ice cream vendors who operate ice cream machines. In addition to the eye catching pack designs, Irish Cone and Wafer has a large range of point of sale units and stands on which to display the products. Largo Foods manages all sales and distribution of Irish Cone and Wafer products and can be contacted on 01 8350611.

Sensational offers

Building on the success of Secret Sensations mini cups, Häagen Dazs has launched Secret Sensations in a pint. Delicious Häagen-Dazs ice cream with soft or crunchy pieces and generous hidden pockets of liquid sauce. The range is available in two flavours; Chocolat Fondant, chocolate ice cream with brownie pieces and several pockets of liquid chocolate sauce. The second flavour is Crème Brûlée; ice cream with caramel crunchy pieces and several pockets of liquid caramel sauce. An integrated marketing campaign will support the launch.

Q&A with …

Colette Reid, senior marketing manager, HB Ice Cream

What are the main consumer trends within the ice cream category at present and how does HB Ice Cream fulfil consumers’ demands?

Consumer trends within the ice cream category are changing. While the category itself has been down year on year, we have most recently seen an increase in luxury brands being purchased such as Ben & Jerry’s which has a 60% volume share of the luxury ice cream sector. Attributing this to people now having less money to eat out but still wanting to treat themselves, we are also seeing the opportunity of suiting every snacking occasion with products such as Magnum Minis and also the introduction in 2013 of our new Cornetto Mini multipacks.

With a conscious effort to appeal to these new trends and needs, HB has introduced products to the market such as Magnum 500ml pots and Carte D’Or Signature which are perfect for sharing on those nights in. As market leaders we are very aware of the need to keep innovation in our products as key to keeping this position and this year we have introduced some fantastic new products which we think will appeal to all from our fluffy vanilla Big Bite or Dracula product to our new Cornetto Enigma Popcorn, we hope that we will have something for everyone!

How significant a marketing campaign does HB Ice Cream have planned for 2013?

We were delighted to be named Ireland’s favourite outdoor advertising campaign of 2012, which demonstrates the lasting appeal of the HB impulse products and brand to Irish customers. This year we plan to build on the success of 2012 with an even bigger and more exciting campaign. As well as a major outdoor presence with standout formats like a Luas Domination, we’re increasing our visibility significantly at point of purchase with formats like i-Lines and Adtowers which will bring our distinctive creative to life where it matters most.

We also plan to really activate our loyal social media following of over 100,000 people with creative campaigns that will really let fans interact with the brand and become part of the campaign itself. So, come rain or shine there will be lots going on to keep HB front of mind this summer.



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