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Women in Ice Cream 2024

Here we are again, on International Women’s Day (IWD) – a worldwide celebration of the incredible achievements of women! Today, like every other year, we celebrate how far we’ve come in the women’s rights movement – and recognize that plenty of progress is still necessary.


Globally, there are almost 4 billion women – many of them completing incredible feats socially, economically, culturally, and politically. And the women in ice cream are no different.


Like last year, we decided to sit down with some female leaders from around the globe of today’s dairy and frozen dessert brands. We wanted to ask them more about their current and future contribution to the industry and learn about their strategies for success in this competitive landscape. In no particular order, here's this year’s panel:


Patricia Olguin – Pop Culture, Dubai


Pop Culture – the home of Dubai’s artisan ice pops since 2020 – is more than just a brand.


As part of Fruitful Day Dubai, a company known for its premium fruit platters and deliveries, Pop Culture uses every bit of fruit, producing zero waste. The 25+ hand-crafted artisan ice pop collection is curated using only the best all-natural ingredients, each bursting with a unique flavor. For owner Patricia Olguin, the brand bridges nostalgic memories and the fresh tastes of today’s generation.


Today, the company has 42 points of sale throughout the UAE.


Sally Newall – Simply Ice Cream, United Kingdom


Established by Sally Newall, Simply Ice Cream is a family-owned business that has been operating for almost 20 years. The brand’s 30+ natural, hand-whisked creamy ice cream and frozen desserts feature local and fresh ingredients with a flavor for everyone – including vegan and sorbet fans and, most recently, our four-legged furry friends (dogs)!

 

Simply Ice Cream believes that simple, natural food tastes best. Its luxurious dairy ice cream is lovingly handmade in the heart of Kent, using only the finest ingredients.

 

Find the brand’s products throughout the southeast in 450+ outlets or via delivery across the UK. 


Kathryn Bricken – Doughlicious, United Kingdom


Kathryn Bricken founded Doughlicious – The London Dough Co. in 2014. The brand is a “Better for You” cookie dough platform in the frozen, chilled, and ambient categories throughout retailers and food service providers in 11 countries. After spending two years perfecting the art of wrapping cookie dough around ice cream, Mintel proudly listed Doughlicious as a top innovative product.

The brand’s cookie dough products are all gluten-free with vegan options and manufactured in the company’s London-based BRC AA-accredited factory, which runs on renewable electricity. Product lines consist of ready-to-bake cookie dough, cookie dough and ice cream bites, and baked ready-to-eat cookies.


Rebecca Göckel – NOMOO, Germany


NOMOO, established in 2018 in Cologne by Rebecca Göckel and Jan Grabow, is a pioneering food startup specializing in producing and distributing flavorful, creamy, plant-based organic ice cream that rivals traditional dairy ice cream.

The company offers a range of ice cream meticulously crafted from natural, organic ingredients, ensuring a rich and intense flavor profile that delights consumers. Ultimately, consumers choose NOMOO for its superior taste, quality ingredients, and alignment with their health, sustainability, and animal welfare values.

Distributed to supermarkets and the food service sector across Germany and Austria, NOMOO serves the growing demand for ethical and environmentally conscious food choices. NOMOO's products are available in various flavors and formats, including cups and sticks.


While reviewing the article below, we hope you’ll celebrate these fierce females with us. At the same time, consider what actions you can take to help create a fair, equal society for all genders.


Now, let's explore each question below and gain valuable insights from these remarkable women!

Jump To:


What goals and mission do you aim to achieve with your brand? What’s the primary business goal you’re currently focusing on?


Patricia

“We aim to make delicious frozen treats using natural ingredients, creating healthier dessert options that people can enjoy guilt-free. At Pop Culture, we’ve got three main goals:

1.    To make healthy treats from natural fruit and with no artificial flavors,

2.   To continuously innovate with new flavors and designs to delight our customers, and

3.   To build a solid reputation for quality, originality, and fun.

To help us achieve them, we’re focusing on growing our business through partnerships, marketing, and new product launches.”


Sally

“Our primary business goal is to focus on our franchise distribution partners. We want to continue ensuring we can supply across the UK while fulfilling online orders.” 


Kathryn

“We aim to stretch the limits of frozen snacking and bring our Doughlicious snackable cookie dough and ice cream bites to the world. We want everyone to have the opportunity to snack anytime, knowing that what they’re snacking on tastes amazing and made with ‘better-for-you’ ingredients.”


Rebecca

“At NOMOO, our mission is to revolutionize the ice cream industry by offering delicious and indulgent treats that are entirely plant-based and environmentally friendly. We aim to give consumers a guilt-free option that doesn't compromise taste or texture.


Our primary business goal is expanding our market presence and distribution network. We’re focusing on increasing our retail partnerships and reaching more supermarkets, cafes, and restaurants across Germany and Austria to make our vegan ice cream accessible to a broader audience.


Additionally, we continuously innovate our product line, introducing new flavors and varieties to captivate consumers and solidify our position as a leading player in the vegan dessert market.”


What do you anticipate the state of the ice cream industry to be in your specific market by the end of 2024?

Patricia

“With the growing interest in healthy options, we anticipate greater demand for homemade and local frozen treats. With Dubai's popularity as a tourist hot spot boasting a mix of cultures, we believe its ice cream scene will continue to thrive. Homegrown brands like ours have the opportunity to succeed by offering healthy and tasty options to customers.”


Sally

“I hope that demand for luxury artisan-type products remains buoyant and well supported by consumers’ thinking. I really believe there’s a growing awareness regarding the quality of food we eat and where it comes from. As artisan producers, we can make a difference.”


Kathryn

“The current market is competitive due to the increased number of snackable ice cream products. Current research shows an anti-tub revolution; people are turning more to indulgent snacks made with premium ingredients and less sugar than competitors. At Doughlicious, we believe we’ll continue seeing more substantial growth than our current growth of 220% year on year in 2023.”


Rebecca

“In the specific markets of Germany and Austria, I anticipate the ice cream industry to continue experiencing significant growth in 2024.


The vegan ice cream segment will likely expand rapidly with the increasing consumer demand for healthier and more sustainable food options, including plant-based alternatives.


Traditional dairy ice cream brands may face intensified competition as consumers become more conscious of their dietary choices and environmental impact.


I also expect to see a rise in innovative flavors and formulations, catering to the market's diverse tastes and dietary preferences.”


In your view, what are the three most crucial challenges that ice cream brands will need to confront and address over the next three years?

Patricia

“People are more focused on eating healthy. Using less plastic and finding sustainable ways to make ice cream are also important to customers.


Ice cream brands need to find ways to make their products more nutritious, like using less sugar or dairy-free ingredients. We must also consider how we package our products and where we get our ingredients from.


Keeping up with customers' wants and being creative is the key to staying ahead. There are a lot of ice cream brands out there, so it’s crucial to stand out and continuously develop flavors or ideas to keep people interested.”


Sally

“We must mitigate rising costs without compromising quality. We’ll also need to consider overseas trade in the current climate. Do the costs outweigh the benefits of exporting, and how can the government ensure this is a smooth process?


I also think that we shouldn’t follow trends too closely!”


Kathryn

“The three biggest challenges will be innovation, global warming, and increased costs for premium ingredients.”

Rebecca

“Brands are going to need to address these three factors:

  1. Sustainability: Brands will face mounting pressure to adopt eco-friendly practices throughout their supply chains, from sourcing ingredients to packaging and distribution.

  2. Health and Wellness Trends: As consumers prioritize health-conscious choices, ice cream brands must find ways to reduce sugar content, offer lower-calorie options, and incorporate functional ingredients without compromising taste and quality.

  3. Market Saturation and Differentiation: With the proliferation of ice cream brands, standing out in a crowded market will become increasingly challenging. Brands must focus on unique value propositions, branding, and marketing strategies to attract and retain consumers.”


In your view, what are the three most significant opportunities to capitalize on in the next three years and why?


Patricia

“Here’s what I predict:

  1. Healthy Choices Are In: More people want snacks that are good for them. Because our popsicles have real fruit, no sugar, and vegan options, we can capitalize on this.

  2. Getting Popsicles to Your Door: People love ordering products online! We want to ensure we can bring our popsicles to them easily – while keeping them frozen in Dubai’s climate!

  3. Collabs with Other Brands: Working with other brands, we could create special popsicles with unique shapes, branding on the stick and packaging, and special flavors. Collaborations are a cool way for both brands to get noticed and reach more customers!”

Sally

“Our climate is undoubtedly changing, and whether this continues is unknown.


At our location in Kent, we now have wonderful vineyards across large areas of the county. With the warmer weather comes extended seasons and increased demand – which ice cream can definitely capitalize on.


British producers have always enjoyed an excellent reputation within the food industry worldwide. To grow this reputation even further, we need to ensure we have a really good route to the export market as a country – not just as individual producers.


We also support making food without additives and unnecessary fillers, which is becoming more recognized. For example, our Strawberry ice cream is literally cream, milk, sugar, and fresh Kentish strawberries.”


Kathryn

“Brands are going to need to pay attention to the following:

  1. More Vegan Options: There continues to be growth in the demand for and flavor profile of non-dairy products.

  2. Population Growth in Developing (Typically Warm) Countries: The GDP in countries like Saudi Arabia and India are increasing rapidly, and tastes are evolving more towards Western dietary trends.

  3. Snackable Innovations: The desire to have a handheld snack that's rewarding any time of day. People want something that makes them feel good any time of day.


Rebecca

“Plant-based innovations, e-commerce, and collaborations will be important in the upcoming years.

  1. Plant-Based Innovation: With the growing popularity of veganism and plant-based diets, ice cream brands have a significant opportunity to expand their offerings and cater to this demographic.

  2. E-Commerce and Direct-to-Consumer Channels: The rise of online shopping presents a lucrative opportunity for ice cream brands to reach consumers directly, bypassing traditional retail channels and building stronger relationships with their customer base.

  3. Collaborations and Partnerships: Collaborating with other food and beverage brands, influencers, and retailers can help ice cream brands extend their reach, tap into new markets, and create unique product offerings that resonate with consumers.”


What are your aspirations for the future of the ice cream industry?


Patricia

“My aspirations for the ice cream industry involve creating homegrown concepts where local flavors and traditions shine through. I also hope to see a strong sense of community within the industry, where ice cream shops become cherished gathering spots for people to connect and enjoy delicious treats.


By embracing these values, the ice cream industry can continue to thrive, delight consumers, and positively impact communities for years.”


Sally

“I want more brands to return to a more natural approach of making ice cream. Have brands look at what they’re including in their products – like sweeteners, fillers, preservatives, additives, and gums – and then try to create them differently. Doing so could help ensure that consumers are eating with less risk to their health.”


Kathryn

“I hope retailers start seeing the value in challenger brands and allowing more of them to occupy freezer space. This will lead to a more competitive marketplace and more incredible innovation.”


Rebecca

“Continued innovation, sustainability, and inclusivity. I hope the industry embraces more plant-based options, prioritizes environmentally friendly practices, and caters to diverse dietary needs and preferences.


Additionally, I envision a future where ice cream brands play a proactive role in promoting social responsibility and contributing to positive change in their communities and the world at large.”

 

Let’s Celebrate IWD Together!

 

The ice cream industry is fiercely competitive, requiring continuous innovation and adaptation to fluctuating consumer demands. Succeeding in this world, no matter where you are, requires a fine-tuned strategy, excellent product, and plenty of skills.


All the women we interviewed had it: the ability to think quickly, react smartly, and constantly innovate for a better tomorrow. And countless others are doing the same. Although this list of women founders and owners is by no means exhaustive, it’s a great place to start for those looking to do business with females in the ice cream industry.


Collectively, we can forge women’s equality – in and outside of the ice cream world. IWD belongs to everyone, everywhere. Let’s continue working collaboratively to build a more inclusive, dynamic world for all of us!


 

ABOUT INNODELICE

Founded by former executives in the ice cream industry, INNODELICE aims to create a worldwide ecosystem of solutions within the frozen dessert industry. Thanks to the relationships fostered by INNODELICE, manufacturers, brands, importers, distributors, and suppliers can discover, buy, and sell solutions to grow their businesses. These solutions include co-manufactured and branded products and innovative and competitive ingredients, packaging, and services. Our collaboration model generates lower costs and fewer risks for our participating partners while optimizing their time to market. To learn more about INNODELICE, contact Andrea Montreuil or visit www.innodelice.com.

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