July Is National Ice Cream Month

Sunday, July 1, 2018 to Tuesday, July 31, 2018

National Ice Cream Month

Details

There’s nothing like a cold and creamy treat to beat the heat. As if we needed an excuse (er, reason) to eat ice cream, we have a perfect one this month—July is National Ice Cream Month! 

And you can’t have ice cream without dairy. Milk, and sometimes cream, along with sweetener and flavoring are the key ingredients for this frozen delicacy. Fun fact: For a dessert to officially be considered ice cream, it must contain at least 10 percent milkfat. 

So, celebrate by enjoying a cone (or two or three or four) this month. And while you’re at it, get to know this freezer staple and some of its delicious cousins a bit better with our fun ice cream facts. 

Other Frozen Treats 

Sherbet, gelato, and fro-yo—oh my! Ice cream has a lot of tasty kin. Here are some fun facts about other frozen treats: 

  • Soft serve and regular ice cream have the same ingredients. But soft serve machines add air while freezing the mixture, which creates a soft consistency. 
  • Frozen custard and ice cream both have to have at least 10 percent fat. However, frozen custard also has to have 1.4 percent egg yolk solids, which is a dried ingredient. 
  • Italy’s version of ice cream, called gelato, doesn’t have as much fat as regular ice cream and is slow-churned. 

Data from Dairy Good 

Ice Cream Production 

Did you know: 

  • Americans consume 23 pounds of ice cream each year on average. (I’m pretty sure I’m on the high side of that average!) 
  • Most manufacturers of ice cream and other frozen desserts are family-owned and have been in business for more than 50 years. 
  • As a seasonal treat, ice cream’s production ramps up starting in March and starts winding down in August, with June being the biggest month for production. 

Data from the International Dairy Foods Association 

History 

No one knows the exact origin of ice cream, but it’s been around in some form or other for centuries. Here are some notable leaders who have enjoyed this cool and creamy treat (or a variation) throughout the years: 

  • Alexander the Great was a fan of snow cones. Well, kind of. He ate a snow and ice mixture that was sweetened with honey and nectar. 
  • In the summer of 1790, President George Washington spent $200 on ice cream, according to records kept by a vendor in New York. That translates to about $5,000 in today’s dollars! 
  • Ronald Reagan may have been known for his love of jelly beans, but he was certainly a fan of ice cream, too. President Reagan declared July to be National Ice Cream Month in 1984. (The third Sunday of the month is also dedicated to National Ice Cream Day.) 

Data from the International Dairy Foods Association