The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C., and the dairy industry are celebrating July as National Ice Cream Month with a month of activity culminating with National Ice Cream Day on July 21, 2019.

“In a town like Washington, ice cream is about as bipartisan as you can get,” said Michael Dykes, D.V.M., IDFA’s president and CEO. “We are proud of our members who work to produce America’s most popular frozen treat and the positive impact they have in local communities.”

In 2017, about 1.4 billion gallons of ice cream and related frozen desserts were produced in the United States, IDFA said. Ice cream is an $11 billion industry that supports 26,000 direct jobs and generates $1.6 billion in direct wages, according to IDFA’s Dairy Delivers. The majority of U.S. ice cream and frozen dessert manufacturers have been in business for more than 50 years, and many are still family-owned businesses.

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan designated July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of the month as National Ice Cream Day. In the proclamation, President Reagan called for all people of the United States to observe these events with "appropriate ceremonies and activities," IDFA noted.

IDFA and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue will celebrate National Ice Cream Day from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. on Monday, July 22, 2019, with an ice cream social at the USDA’s Farmers Market in Washington, D.C. The event is free and open to the public.

IDFA said it partners with Research America to study U.S. ice cream data and trends on an ongoing basis. New data are now being released to recognize National Ice Cream Month. IDFA pointed out that:

  • Most ice cream is made March through July. July is the busiest production month for ice cream makers.
  • Nearly two-thirds of Americans rank vanilla as their favorite ice cream flavor.
  • Candy or chocolate pieces are the most popular confection, followed by cookies, brownies and cake.
  • Two-fifths of ice cream makers are seeing increased demand for premium ice cream, while 17% are seeing an increase in gelato demand, followed by 15% for sorbet. Demand for low-fat or non-fat ice cream ranked the lowest, at just 4%.
  • Almost half of survey respondents have been making ice cream for more than 50 years.

IDFA said it encourages ice cream fans around the nation to celebrate all month long. Fans may share their own photos and social media posts using #NationalIceCreamMonth and tag @dairyidfa on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

More information about ice cream is available on IDFA’s website: