Cadbury Flake deemed too crumbly for 99 cones, say ice cream vendors
The famous Cadbury Flake, synonymous with the 99 cones sold in ice cream vans, was deemed “too crumbly” by sellers.
The row comes as the UK is set to experience the hottest day of the year so far this bank holiday weekend, prompting queues at ice cream vans across the country.
Sellers say the quality of Cadbury Flake 99 has deteriorated since production of the sweet was moved to Egypt.
Parent company Mondelez International said it was looking into the matter, but warned that old stock could still be in circulation.
The big boxes contain around 144 Flake 99s, but Katy Alston, who operates a van in Bognor Regis and is chair of The Ice Cream Alliance, told the BBC she had to throw away half in some cases.
You can’t give someone a 99 with a broken Flake. It’s embarrassing for an ice cream man
“We’ve thrown 70 in one box before because they’ve all been broken,” she said.
“For the first time, I will not be using Cadbury Flakes this year. It feels a different product.
She also claimed that the reputation of ice cream vendors should be preserved and said, “If you order a 99, you want a good, solid flake in it.”
Other sellers say it’s “inconvenient” to sell a broken Flake.
“You can’t give someone a 99 with a broken Flake. It’s embarrassing for an ice cream man,” John Taylor, owner of C&M Creamery Ices, told the BBC.
Lawrence Glauser, owner of Lorenzo’s Ices in East Yorkshire, said the flakes are a “big deal” and resorted to German-brand chocolate sticks instead.
“Clients don’t seem to care, German clients are much denser and don’t seem to fall apart as easily,” he said.
Cadbury has been owned by Mondelez International since 2010 and has been manufacturing Flake 99s in Egypt since 2020.
Cadbury Flake 99 is a naturally delicate and crumbly product, and we have processes in place within our supply chain to avoid breakage as much as possible.
The American multinational insists the recipe has not changed and has taken quality issues “very seriously”.
In a statement, a Mondelez International spokesperson said, “We care about our loyal customer base and take quality issues very seriously. Cadbury Flake 99 is a naturally delicate and crumbly product, and we have processes in place within our supply chain to avoid breakage as much as possible.
“We are aware that recently some customers have received products that do not meet our usual high standards. This issue has been resolved as a result of improvements in our production processes, although some past stock may remain in circulation.
“We are in the process of liaising with our customers (wholesalers) to support those potentially affected. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused.