Cadbury's under fire for changes to Creme Eggs

Emma Woollacott
Cadbury's Creme Egg
Cadbury's Creme Egg

Fans of Cadbury's Creme Eggs are up in arms after the company's US owners' admitted that they've changed the recipe - and cut the size of the multi-pack from six to five.

Mondelez has stopped making the shell of the eggs using Cadbury's Dairy Milk, and is instead using chocolate of a more standard mix.

"It's no longer Dairy Milk. It's similar, but not exactly Dairy Milk. We tested the new one with consumers," a spokesman told the Sun.

"It was found to be the best one for the Creme Egg, which is why we've used it this year."

He added: "The Creme Egg has never been called the Cadbury's Dairy Milk Creme Egg. We have never played on the fact that Dairy Milk chocolate was used."

Meanwhile, the company has also changed the Creme Egg multi-packs to contain just five, rather than six, of the sugary treats. But while the recommended retail price has dropped from £3.05 to £2.85, many retailers are selling them at the same price.

Many customers are venting their fury on the Cadbury UK Twitter account, and the company's desperately trying to defend its actions. The reason for the shrinking multi-pack, it says, is rising costs.

"We now sell them in 5 packs due to changes in economic factors, such as the cost of ingredients that make our eggs so delicious," the company explains.

"There's a reduced RRP of £2.85 for the Creme Egg 5 pack, but the price that retailers actually sell at is down to them we're afraid."

Cadbury's should have realised already that it messes with its products at its peril. Shortly before Christmas, it announced that it was to stop making chocolate coins, again infuriating customers.

A year earlier, customers started complaining that Dairy Milk itself tasted different - although the company said this was actually the effect of a change in the bars' shape, and that the recipe hadn't been altered.

Meanwhile, down-sizing products or multi-packs is particularly unpopular with customers who, quite understandably, often feel they're being ripped off - particularly if the shrinkage isn't immediately apparent.

Cadbury shrank its tins of Roses chocolates in 2011, and its chocolate bars by about ten percent a year later.

The 200-year-old firm makes more than 200 million Creme Eggs a year at its Bournville factory - although ther're only available in the months leading up to Easter. Customers are hoping that next year's batch will have the familiar Dairy Milk taste once again - and that the packs won't be one short.

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