Ice cream parlours and ice cream vans have lost nearly £300m in income during the pandemic, with nearly a thousand businesses closing, it has been revealed.
The Ice Cream Alliance (ICA), which represents the UK ice cream sector, is now mobilising its members, the wider industry and other parts of the hospitality sector to promote their products to those holidaying in the country this summer.
It has made a free digital marketing toolkit available to businesses that wish to get behind the campaign.
“Ice cream parlours and ice cream vans have been hard hit in this pandemic losing a total of £289m in income in 2020,” said ICA CEO Zelica Carr. “And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when you add lost ice cream sales in cafes, restaurants and hotels and the economic impact to businesses along the supply chain – manufacturers, flavour houses, wholesalers and many others.”
Ms Carr stressed that the campaign was not about dictating to businesses how to market their products.
“It’s about harnessing everyone’s creative flair and dynamism and providing them with the tools – across digital marketing, PR, influencer marketing, POS – to maximise sales and bounce back from a truly horrid 12 months. We are providing marketing materials, guides and templates free to everyone who wants it – not just to ICA members.”
The ICA surveyed members on the effects of the pandemic on business in 2020 and found that 90 ice cream parlours had closed for good along with 800 mobile operators.
However, the government’s furlough scheme has been a life saver for many businesses with up to 62% of staff furloughed at some point during the pandemic.