I admit that I have a weakness for chocolate, anything sweet really. But, in particular I have a weakness for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, which I consider the world’s most perfect food. I’m not saying they’re good for you, they’re just really darn good. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are the candy I would never buy to give out as treats at Halloween because frankly I’d eat the whole bag and there’d be none left for the trick or treaters. I have no will power when faced with this temptation.
However, since moving to the UK I have been able to resist the temptation of Reese’s simply because you just can’t find them. They’re not in the supermarket checkout, not at the petrol / gas station, no where I would regularly find myself inclined to pick up a candy bar on a whim. Hershey’s products in general are scarce here as Cadbury and other brands I don’t recognize fill the candy isles. No Hershey bars, no Hershey Kisses, nada.
That is until now. In recent weeks I’ve seen the glorious orange packages staring at me by the checkout at Sainsbury’s. And I’ve bought them like I’m afraid I’ll never see them again. I’m sure some market researcher in their back office is amazed at the success they’ve had stocking these on the shelves. But, it’s really just the one person buying them all, me. What I didn’t know was that back in December, Hershey’s struck a deal to start distributing their products in two of the mainstream grocery stores, Sainsbury’s and Asda (subsidiary of Walmart). I’m not sure yet whether this is a blessing or a curse.
An aside to the UK Hershey’s revolution that my American friends should take note of is the fact that Hershey’s and Walmart are specifically making a point that the products they sell in the European market will not include any genetically modified (GM) ingredients. However, the products they distribute in the US have and will continue to have GM ingredients. Any argument from these companies that it’s not cost-effective to eliminate GM ingredients is surely a hollow one as they found a way to make it cost-effective when an international distribution agreement potentially worth billions was at stake. Do they take for granted that Americans care so little about the quality of their food supply? Granted, Hershey’s is junk food and people can choose not to eat it. But I’m just sayin’.