July is National Ice Cream Month

July brings many reasons to celebrate: parades, festivals, fireworks and the Fourth of July, to name a few. During those celebrations, many will indulge in one of America’s favorite frozen treats: ice cream. And it’s fitting since July is National Ice Cream Month.

Ice cream has a long list of distinguished supporters, including U.S. presidents George Washington and Ronald Reagan. In 1984 President Reagan officially recognized July as National Ice Cream Month and designated the third Sunday of the month as National Ice Cream Day, to be celebrated with “appropriate ceremonies and activities.” This year, National Ice Cream Day will fall on Sunday, July 20.

Much of the milk produced in Michigan goes to local processors to be made into a variety of dairy products, including ice cream. According to the International Dairy Foods Association about nine percent of all the milk produced by U.S. dairy farms is used to produce ice cream.

The milk used for ice cream and other dairy products has helped make dairy one of the leading segments of Michigan's agricultural industry, contributing approximately $14.7 billion annually to the state's economy. It's definitely something to celebrate, and what better way than with a freshly-scooped ice cream cone?

Fun facts about ice cream:

·      Vanilla is the top-selling flavor

·      It takes about 50 licks to finish a single scoop ice cream cone

·      It takes 12 lbs. of milk to make one gallon of ice cream

·      In 1812 Dolley Madison served ice cream at the second inaugural ball

·      George Washington enjoyed ice cream so much that he ran up a $200 ice cream bill in 1774. That’s more than $5,000 today.