Ice cream innovation 冰淇淋創新趨勢

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幾個世紀以來,冰淇淋是所有年齡段的人都喜歡的美食,如今,我們吃的冰淇淋比以往任何時候都多,這是為什麼呢?需求如何影響冰淇淋的生產和消費?本文淺談未來冰淇淋的創新趨勢。

字彙:ice cream 冰淇淋

Is there anything nicer than a cooling ice cream on a hot summer’s day? This traditional treat is centuries old, but our tastes and consumer habits are evolving. How is the ice cream production process changing, and who is driving this change?

Making ice cream is a time-consuming process. While the recipe is simple – milk, sugar and fat, plus flavours and colours – ice cream has a complex chemistry. Getting the balance right between ice, fat and air is important if the ice cream is to have the right texture. To achieve this, the ingredients need to be mixed and heated, then cooled and frozen – a process that takes time and uses a lot of energy. Designers and engineers are working to improve the production process with new specialised equipment to make it increasingly automated. For now, however, even with the help of robots and 3D printers, it can take up to two years from testing a new frozen dessert product to it being available to consumers.

And demand is only going up. According to the food packaging company Tetra Pak, more than 25 billion litres of ice cream were eaten worldwide in 2021. While the US and China are the biggest consumers, data from NielsenIQ shows that people in the UK bought 28% more ice cream during the UK’s record-breaking summer compared to a year earlier. Clearly, rising temperatures can explain why some people are buying more ice cream, but it’s not the only explanation. The pandemic has seen people reaching for pleasures they can enjoy at home, which include eating indulgent foods. And worries about the cost-of-living crisis could have a similar effect, as even a premium ice cream is an affordable treat.

So, what new things can we expect on a stick or in a cone? Consumers of all ages buy ice cream, but it is millennial consumers who are driving interest in more original flavours, including spices. Dairy still dominates, but plant-based ice cream, sorbets and low-calorie choices are a growing part of the frozen dessert market. But, according to Elsebeth Baungaard, portfolio manager at Tetra Pak, the next global trend will be less about innovation and more about portion size. “I’m sorry to say it’s simply shrinking“, she says. “But the quality will be higher.”

字彙表

treat 美食,享受
taste 口味
evolve 變化,演變
production process 生產過程
drive (a change) 推動(變化)
flavour 口味
complex 複雜的
get the balance right 把握好…的平衡
texture 口感
increasingly automated 越來越自動化
frozen dessert 冷凍甜品
indulgent 作為一種享受的
premium 優質的,頂級的
affordable 買得起的
on a stick 在棍子上的
in a cone 在錐形蛋筒裡的
dairy 乳品
plant-based ice cream 植物冰淇淋
sorbet 冰糕,雪糕
global trend 全球趨勢
portion size 份量
shrink 變小,縮小

測驗與練習

1.  閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. How do you get the right texture in ice cream?

2. How long can it take to create a new ice cream?

3. True or False? Rising temperatures are the only reason people are buying more ice cream.

4. What new flavours and ingredients can we expect in the future?

5. True or False? The next global trend in ice cream will be smaller portion sizes.

2.  選擇意思恰當的單詞或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. When we were children, we were allowed one biscuit as a _______ after dinner.

treat                            dairy                    indulgent                  premium

2. My tastes have _______ over time. I prefer salty snacks to sweet treats now.

consumer habits         evolved               processed                driven

3. Try to _______ an apple rather than a chocolate bar when you’re hungry.

portion size                 dominate             shrink                       reach for

4. We decided to pay a little extra for the _______ seats. The view of the stage was much better.

affordable                    premium              millennial                 innovation

5. The tech company dominates the market because of its _______ and ability to adapt to global trends.   

premium                      innovation           indulgent                  texture

答案

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. How do you get the right texture in ice cream?
To get the right texture when making ice cream, you need to get the balance right between ice, fat and air.

2. How long can it take to create a new ice cream?
It can take up to two years from testing a new frozen dessert product to it being available to consumers. 

3. True or False? Rising temperatures are the only reason people are buying more ice cream.
False. The pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis mean people are reaching for indulgent but affordable treats they can enjoy at home.

4. What new flavours and ingredients can we expect in the future?
We can expect more original flavours, including spices, and more plant-based ice cream, sorbets and low-calorie choices.

5. True or False? The next global trend in ice cream will be smaller portion sizes.
True. Portions will shrink but the quality will be higher, according to Elsebeth Baungaard, portfolio manager at Tetra Pak.

2. 選擇意思恰當的單詞或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. When we were children, we were allowed one biscuit as a treat after dinner.

2. My tastes have evolved over time. I prefer salty snacks to sweet treats now.

3. Try to reach for an apple rather than a chocolate bar when you’re hungry.

4. We decided to pay a little extra for the premium seats. The view of the stage was much better.

5. The tech company dominates the market because of its innovation and ability to adapt to global trends.