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It’s Been a Rocky Street for Chocolate-Chip Ice Cream Gross sales

It’s Been a Rocky Street for Chocolate-Chip Ice Cream Gross sales

Over the years, the ice-cream world has become a lot more complex, offering dozens of flavors beyond classic vanilla and chocolate. But there’s one in particular that you may start struggling to find at grocery stores and scoop shops.

Vanilla chocolate-chip ice cream, once a hallmark of the industry, has become less beloved by the public in recent years, The New York Times reported on Thursday. From 2018 to 2022, sales of the flavor dropped 22 percent in volume, according to industry data cited by the newspaper. In comparison, sales of vanilla fell 6.4 percent in the same time frame, while sales of cookies and cream rose a whopping 72.6 percent.

“It’s not the worst, but it’s not that good,” 8-year-old Ani Ward told the Times about chocolate-chip ice cream. (There are few people more credible on the treat than a child.)

While chocolate chip used to be available year-round, it’s now become a seasonal flavor in many places, appearing only during the summer, and some manufacturers offer chocolate-chip ice cream only in select markets. And though it was once one of the most popular flavors of all time, chocolate-chip no longer sits in the top 10, according to the International Dairy Foods Association. Now it’s being beaten out by combos like cookies and cream and chocolate-chip cookie dough (which may be similar, but which ice-cream fans definitively see as different).

The reasons for chocolate chip’s fall-off aren’t completely clear. As always, tastes change, and consumers have more delicious options than ever when it comes to ice cream. For Babcock Dairy Plant, a Wisconsin producer that’s been making ice cream for 75 years, chocolate chip hasn’t been a regular offering in a decade. Blue Bell Creameries told The New York Times that chocolate chip isn’t a standard flavor for the company, while Tillamook noted that it had recently expanded into flavors like Brownie Batter and Dark Chocolate Cookies & Cream.

The move away from chocolate chip has left fans of the stuff disappointed when they head to the freezer aisle, which is stocked with ice cream but not their particular favorite. In response, they’ve started to eat other flavors, like plain old vanilla. Mark Sawyer, one such chocolate-chip devotee, proposed the Italian stracciatella as an alternative, although you’ll typically find that as gelato rather than ice cream.

If you see pints of chocolate chip the next time you’re at the grocery store, you may want to stock up.

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Source: Robb Report

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