The foods and drink I have just mentioned have been manufactured here in the UK for hundreds of years. However, what I didn’t realise is that many British brands have already lost their Made in Britain pride. I always thought the idea of Brexit was to stop foreign workers taking English jobs.
For the record; HP sauce and Twinings tea have already moved production abroad and Colman’s – now owned by Unilever – plans to close its Norwich factory after 160 years this autumn, moving to other sites including one in Germany. Others are following suit, Nestle-owned Blue Riband chocolate biscuits, made in Britain since 1936, are set to be made in Poland with the loss of nearly 300 jobs. Swiss firm Nestle claims the switch, affecting jobs in Newcastle, York, Halifax and Girvan in Scotland, will help the firm stay competitive.
It’s ironic that just when Brexit is about to reclaim our borders and protect our sovereignty, traditional bits of Britain are scuttling off abroad. You might think it matters little that Blue Riband chocolate biscuits are now made in Poland as long as they taste good.
But it matters a lot to those who lose their jobs!
Centuries of tradition are being swept aside in pursuit of profits. Multinational companies are trying to con us into thinking these products are British. Colman’s still has the “By Appointment to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II” on their labels. Unilever is even selling off the Colman’s site for redevelopment losing nearly 200 years of production and more than 100 jobs. This whole policy is driven by the pursuit of the mighty profit.
British firms have a strong charitable tradition, with Colman’s setting up schools and Cadbury building facilities for its workforce and local communities. All that is being ripped to pieces.
Nestle has made Smarties in Hamburg since 2006 while rival firm Mars moved Twix to France and Germany a year later. There has been a series of foreign takeovers of British brands in the past 20 years – with one of the most controversial being Kraft’s £12billion Cadbury swoop in 2010.
Kraft – now Mondelez International – closed a factory near Bristol where Wispa and Crunchie bars were made, and moved production to Poland. Curly Wurlys have been manufactured there since 2008. Mint chocolate firm Bendicks, also made by royal appointment since 1930, was moved from Winchester to Germany in 2011 after a buyout. Organic chocolate firm Green & Black’s is now made in Italy as well as Poland where Twinings tea is produced along with Terry’s Chocolate Orange.
HP Sauce was bought up by US giant Heinz in 2006 and moved from Birmingham to Holland in 2007.
Mike Watkins, retail insight head at industry analyst Nielsen, claims we’re not too bothered where brands are made. He said: “What’s important to shoppers is price.”
It all stinks!
But if you have a government who allow our own passports to be made in France, what can we expect?