The ice cream industry offers a variety of packaging formats, ranging from single portion packs to multi-portion packs.
The sector’s approach to portion size is as follows:
A significant proportion of the ice cream portfolio marketed in Europe consists of single portion packs. These are individually pre-packed, pre-portioned ice creams intended to be consumed by an individual at a single consumption occasion. Examples include ice cream sticks, ice cream cones, ice cream sandwiches, ice cream cups, etc.
The portion size of a single portion pack is obvious, they simply coincide. The portion size is clearly recognizable, well defined and intended to be consumed by an individual at a single consumption occasion.
It is highly unlikely that single portion packs equal 100g/100ml which is the standard expression form for mandatory nutrition declaration in the EU. Most single portion packs marketed across Europe are below 100g and range between 50ml to 130ml.
Therefore, providing front-of-pack nutrition information per portion for single serve packs is the appropriate way to correctly inform consumers of the actual nutrient content they intend to consume, without requiring them to calculate or estimate the nutrient content themselves starting from a value per 100g/100ml.
In the case of a front-of-pack nutrition scheme/symbol which only illustrates the nutritional composition for 100g of product, this provides the wrong information to the consumer about the product’s real contribution to dietary intake, which is effectively controlled by single serve pack.
A smaller proportion of the ice cream portfolio marketed in Europe consists of multi-portion packs. These are mostly scooping ice creams intended for multiple or shared consumption occasions, e.g., trays, bulks, etc. Unlike for single portion packs, the portion size in a multi-portion pack is not clearly recognisable. To help consumers understand what a typical portion of a multi-portion pack format is, Euroglaces recommends an EU sector-wide agreed portion size of 2 scoops, resulting in an average volume of 100ml or its equivalent by weight. This portion size has been established within the European ice cream industry since 2006 and therefore is well recognised, for a period of more than 15 years, as an amount reasonably expected to be consumed by an individual in a single consumption occasion as part of an overall balanced diet.
Also, for multi-portion packs, providing front-of-pack nutrition information per portion is highly relevant as it allows consumers to better understand the nutritional contribution of the recommended portion.
Euroglaces believes that providing front-of-pack nutrition information per portion-size is a meaningful tool and the right information to empower consumers to make an informed choice and to control their calorie intake in the framework of an overall balanced diet.