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Understanding the Landscape of Packaged Ice Cream in 2023

As we head into summer 2023, indulging in ice cream remains a popular pastime in the US. Last year alone, retail packaged ice cream sales exceeded 7.3 billion dollars, which equated to over 1.7 billion cartons sold! It’s hard to imagine that many cartons. To help visualize how much ice cream is in 1.7 billion cartons, picture 800 Olympic size pools full of ice cream! It would only take 132 billion spoonsful to empty these 800 pools, so let’s all dig in.


When you analyze home consumption by package size, “half-gallons” (40oz-64oz) remain the top-selling package size, representing 56% of all unit sales. Pint (10oz-18oz) sales are number two, representing 38% of unit sales. However, when you convert these packages to total gallonage, “half gallons” represent 72% of all ice cream consumed.


Another astounding statistic to consider – retail sales come from approximately 500 brands, from local, to regional, to national brands, representing close to 8,000 active SKUs. The industry is very active and progressive in providing consumers with many unique options. It takes many passionate, hardworking, people to satiate America’s desire for ice cream!




Data referenced is Nielsen xAOC 2022.