New York Irish in meltdown over chocolate ban

An area of New York affectionately known as ‘Little Ireland’ is in meltdown over a ban on the importation of its favourite chocolates. The Irish treats will soon vanish from the Bronx and other areas as Hershey’s have blocked the Irish and British made Cadbury’s UK Ltd products from crossing the Atlantic.

Cadbury's bars

Cadbury's bars Image by Joe Anderson / CC BY 2.0

In a bid to beat the import ban, the New York Daily News reports that delis, butchers and bars in the Woodlawn area of the Bronx, have stocked up significantly by ordering extra bars. However, that won’t last forever as the recent agreement between Hershey’s and Let’s Buy British will mean empty shelves once the last of the products sells out.

The owner of Sean’s Quality Deli on Katonah Ave, Bernadette Walsh, said the whole thing was “absurd”. She stocks a full aisle of sweets from Ireland with such delights as Cadbury’s Dairy Milk and Flake bars, Maltesers, and Roses.

The latest situation is the result of a lawsuit brought by Hershey’s for copyright infringement by a New Jersey importer in 2014. The suit claims the company sold Cadbury and other chocolates with packaging similar to Hershey’s products in the US.

Earlier Hershey’s successfully stopped Posh Nosh Imports from importing the treats. The crux is that while Hershey’s is also licensed to sell chocolate under the Cadbury name, the customers from Ireland and UK find that the taste under their recipes are not the same as the traditional bars that sated their sweet tooth cravings.

Nearly 30,000 people have signed an on-line petition protesting at the move in the past week.

One store attendant explained that it was a major part of the Katonah Family Deli business. “The whole area is Irish,” Sammy Ali, 18, pointed out. One customer said that the Irish would get around the ban in their own way. “We’ll have to have Granny send over a few care packages,” she joked.

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