By: Aimee Shaw
Caramilk chocolate will be back on sale next month after a limited edition run last year of a million bars saw them changing hands for up to $50.
Cadbury, owned by US multinational confectionery firm Mondelez, experienced strong demand in July last year for the caramelised white chocolate that was discontinued in 1994. Some of the chocolate blocks were auctioned on TradeMe and sold for up to $50.
In total $3 million worth of stock – one million blocks – was sold in just three weeks.
Cadbury New Zealand country manager James Kane said 1.5 million blocks would be up for grabs this time round, released in supermarkets on February 1.
“The overwhelming feedback that we had last time was that people were disappointed they had missed out on getting stock so we’re expecting it will be equally popular this time,” he said.
“We’ve made more stock in the hope that people can get it.”
It is unknown which year Cadbury initially launched the Caramilk product as a permanent item in New Zealand, but it was available until 1994.
It was also unknown why it was discontinued, Kane said.
“It’s a bit of a mystery as to why it stopped being made because looking back now it seems like it was a winner.”
The company has donated 64 blocks to Paralympics New Zealand and Make A Wish Foundation to be auctioned off on Trade Me.
Planning and production for next month’s sale began last year, Kane said.
“We knew pretty quickly in the middle of last year, when it sold really well and we were getting a lot of requests for bringing it back, so we were able to start sorting raw materials, different packaging and ingredients in the second half of last year, and then the actual production itself was around three weeks of continuous work.”
Countdown Ponsonby store manager Brad Rossiter said the supermarket was anticipating the product to fly off the shelves, and would recruit an additional security guard to cope with demand.
“In all seriousness, as a retailer it’s really exciting to see how much Kiwis love the product,” Rossiter said. “We know when customers walk in the door they’ll want to be able to find Cadbury Caramilk straight away so we’ll need to have a display by the door piled high to meet demand.”
Kane said there were no plans to bring Caramilk back permanently, but the idea could not be written off.
“At the moment we’ve made as much as we possibly can, and we can only manage to make enough stock for a short run – but never say never.”
Source: NZ Herald