Cad­bury stock­pil­ing choco­late in case Brexit goes dis­as­trously

Tulsa World - - Datelines - By Adam Taylor The Wash­ing­ton Post

LON­DON — Bri­tain is sched­uled to leave the Euro­pean Union next year, but it still hasn't reached a deal on how ex­actly this could hap­pen. If it leaves Europe with­out a deal, some ex­perts have warned that there may be chaos at the bor­ders and a short­age of key goods.

On Tues­day, the owner of the beloved con­fec­tionary brand Cad­bury an­nounced the com­pany has a plan to deal with the threat of this dreaded “no-deal” Brexit: a choco­late stock­pile.

Hugh We­ber, the pres­i­dent of Mon­delez Europe, told the Times of Lon­don that while they hope Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May can reach an agree­ment to al­low the free flow of goods with Europe, they had a con­tin­gency plan in case no deal is reached be­fore the March 29 dead­line.

The com­pany was “pre­par­ing for a hard Brexit and, from a buffer­ing per­spec­tive for Mon­delez, we are stock­ing higher lev­els of in­gre­di­ents and fin­ished prod­ucts, although you can only do so much be­cause of the shelf life of our prod­ucts,” We­ber was quoted as say­ing.

We­ber added, how­ever, that “the UK is not self­suf­fi­cient in terms of food in­gre­di­ents, so that could be a chal­lenge.”

U.S. com­pany Mon­delez has owned the Cad­bury brand since 2010. Founded in Birm­ing­ham in 1824, Cad­bury is per­haps the most iconic choco­late pro­ducer in Bri­tain, known for its Dairy Milk choco­late bars, as well as other fa­vorites such as Creme Eggs.

It isn't the first time the choco­latier had warned about the pos­si­ble ef­fect of Brexit on its prod­uct. Last year, Glenn Ca­ton of Cad­bury's Bri­tish op­er­a­tions told the Guardian that the com­pany may even­tu­ally have to pass on higher costs to cus­tomers by rais­ing prices or sell­ing smaller prod­ucts at the same price.

Af­ter the vote to leave the EU in 2016, the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment has con­sis­tently dis­missed the pos­si­bil­ity of a no-deal Brexit that would see the coun­try re­vert to World Trade Or­ga­ni­za­tion rules on its bor­ders.

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