China has overtaken the United States as the world's largest ice cream producer, according to statistics published at an industry expo in north China's Tianjin City.
In 2016, China's major frozen drink producers yielded more than 3.3 million tonnes of frozen drinks, ringing up nearly 44 billion yuan (6.6 billion U.S. dollars) in sales, a spokesperson with the frozen food committee of China Association of Bakery & Confectionery Industry said at Ice Cream China which opened Thursday.
Taking the output of smaller producers into account, China's total production of ice cream last year surpassed that of the United States, according to the spokesperson.
China's per capita consumption of ice cream has grown from one liter 20 years ago to 3 liters in 2016.
"Compared with developed countries, ice cream industry is still young in China and has a lot of room for growth," said Zhu Nianlin, director of the association.
This year's Ice Cream China hosted nearly 400 exhibitors, with more than 1,500 booths in an area covering 35,000 square meters.