National Frozen Yogurt Day on February 6th recognizes a sweet frozen dessert that has gone from fad status to staple freezer item in a few decades.
- H.P Hood developed the first frozen yogurt in 1970. It was created as a soft-serve treat called Frogurt. Not long afterward, Humphreys and Dannon released their own versions of frozen yogurt. Its popularity grew in the 80s, mostly due to frozen yogurts “health food” status. Ice cream manufacturers soon caught on, offering low-fat options.
- When frozen yogurt first hit the market in the 1970s, it was not as popular as it is today. Many consumers felt that the dessert was too tart and similar to room temperature yogurt.
- In the ’80s, frozen yogurt manufacturers began to play with the dessert’s recipe, adding flavor and changing the texture.
- The health conscious crowds began to eat up the product, skyrocketing sales to $25 million. The growth did not stop there; by the ’90s, the product had reached $330 million in sales.
- Yogurt giant Dannon was among the first to jump on the blossoming trend, with its 1979 release of “Danny,” a packaged, fruit-flavored frozen yogurt pop on a stick with a chocolate coating. Dannon’s pop became the first perishable frozen treat to be distributed nationwide.
- Although TCBY ruled the froyo roost for decades, it’s no longer number one, despite recent attempts to rebrand itself with new décor and updated self-serve machines. As of 2015, the front-runner is California-based Menchie’s, with 13.5 percent of the market and 300 U.S. locations—which is no mean feat, considering it was only established in 2010. TCBY trails with 10.8 percent of the market and 518 locations, and then Yogurtland, sweetFrog, and Red Mango round out the top five.
- Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan clearly can’t resist froyo—she was responsible for the installation of the first frozen-yogurt machine in the Supreme Court cafeteria. As such, Kagan joked that she’ll be remembered as the “frozen yogurt justice” in the annals of history.
- Frozen yogurt has many names and old names, including: “froyo,” “frogurt,” “Humphreez Yogart,” and even “Danny.”
- Frozen yogurt offers plenty of health benefits, including: boosting the immune system, lowering cholesterol, preventing certain yeast infections, assisting with lactose intolerance and milk protein digestion, and is a great source of calcium, potassium, protein, and vitamins B12 and Riboflavin.
- Frozen yogurt doesn’t just come from cow’s milk. The milk of sheep, water buffalo, and goats are used to create delicious frozen yogurt across the United States. Additionally, in Western China and the Middle East, camel and yaks produce this frozen dessert as well.
- You know Frozen Yogurt has become popular when Google is involved. In 2010 Google’s Android release was code named “Froyo”. Frozen Yogurt proudly sits next to other code-names such as Marshmallow and Kit-Kat among others.