Is it a Ice-Cream or Frozen Dessert!!! Confused??? Lets find out what it is...

Those in Mumbai listening to FM channels this summer must have heard of ads blogging the goodness of ‘real’ milk ice creams over frozen desserts, which are made primarily from vegetable oil. The message from India’s largest ice cream player was loud and clear: Go for Amul and not frozen desserts, offered by the likes of Hindustan Unilever (Kwality Walls) and Vadilal.

But have you guys ever thought that why India's largest diary giant (AMUL) which is in the ice cream business for the past 17 years ago is going all out to defend its milk-based ice creams from the onslaught of frozen desserts over a mass medium. And it is not without reason: Frozen desserts have grabbed nearly 50 per cent share of the Rs 1,500-crore organised ice cream-plus-frozen desserts market in India. In fact, Amul and HUL sparred over the category last year and it was upon Amul’s complaint to the Advertising Standards Council of India that Hindustan Unilever was forced to begin referring to its wares as frozen dessert and not ice cream.

So that brings us to the talk of this Blog as in what is the real (read actual) difference between Ice-cream and a Frozen Dessert. As per The Prevention of Food Adulteration (PFA) Act & Rules, ice cream is defined as a “product obtained by freezing a pasteurised mix prepared from milk and/or other products derived from milk.” Frozen desserts are “products obtained by freezing a pasteurised mix prepared with milk fat and/or edible vegetable oils and fats in combination with milk protein and/or vegetable protein products.” They typically use palm oil or coconut oil.

So as a basic difference the cost of ingredients is quite less in frozen dessert as a litre of vegetable oil costs Rs 60 whereas milk fat costs Rs 300. This means costs are lower for frozen desserts and the benefits can be passed on to consumers, at marginally lower selling prices. Thats the reason why frozen desserts are marching ahead in sales and volumes and that has lead to this ad war.

Note: The information is just a guiding source to a reader on to understand the basic difference between the products mentioned in the blog. You can refer to various articles and literature to get a more clear understanding.

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Comment by Pankaj Sharma on August 19, 2013 at 2:56pm

Hi Harsha, when we talk about requisites for labelling, there is indeed a noticeable difference in both the products because as per Food and Drug Administration, the guardian of “standards of identity,”: “Ice cream requires specific levels of milk fat content, nonfat milk solids content, total solids in each gallon of ice cream, and total weight in each gallon of ice cream, while frozen dairy products do not.”

In general, ice cream has at least 10 percent dairy fat, and a frozen dairy dessert does not. 

“Consumers make choices based on a number of factors including calories, fat content, indulgence and portion control – but taste preference is always a key however in countries like India, the consumer is still not aware of the basic difference and more importantly price benefit which consumers derive is still of value to us.

Comment by Harsha Rohila on August 13, 2013 at 10:48pm

Not only companies like Vadilal and Kwality Walls have been misleading the customers, but are also running high on their sales profit by this bluff. An article in Economic Times caught my attention some time back and I was surprised to know that Hindustan Unilevers Kwality Walls manufactures only frozen desserts and does not make use of milk fat at all.
But, having standards of identity and set requisites for labelling, are there no laws governing the same issue? 


Comment by jatinder kumar on June 15, 2013 at 10:31am

same is in case of margarine and butter. Most seller and consumer do not understand diff between butter and margarine. They are selling margarine as low price butter.

Comment by Prashant Sahni on June 14, 2013 at 9:43pm

Valuable piece of information sir , thanks for sharing  

Comment by Anusha Ramani on June 14, 2013 at 6:40pm

valuable difference between icecream and frozendesert

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