The iconic triangular chocolate bars made by Toblerone will no longer be made exclusively in Switzerland.
The bar’s chocolate peaks are said to be a tribute to the Swiss Alps close to the country’s capital, Bern, where it has been made for more than 100 years.
Now, the US owners of the brand are set to move some manufacturing to Bratislava, the Slovak capital, about 600 miles away.
Triangular chocolate – familiar to the millions who peruse the duty-free shops at the airport – has been produced in the Swiss city of Bern for more than a century.
But American confectionery maker Mondelez, which owns Toblerone, has announced a move to Slovakia in late 2023 to cut costs.
The chocolate bar will reportedly no longer bear the words “Swiss Milk Chocolate” on its packaging, even though most of the manufacturing remains in Switzerland.
This is because all steps in the manufacturing process must take place in Switzerland in order to receive the label.
Employees reportedly feared that while outsourcing part of production to Slovakia was just the beginning, production costs and wages were much lower in Slovakia than in Switzerland.
In 2008, when Toblerone celebrated its 100th anniversary, it described itself as “a real piece of traditional Swiss chocolate”, but that now has to change.
The burn factory will remain in place, Toblerone reportedly saying: “The burn is an important part of our history and will remain so in the future.”
The Toblerone chocolate bar was invented in 1908 by chocolatiers Theodor Tobler and Emil Baumann. He chose the name with a combination of “tobler” and “torone,” which are the Italian names for honey, nuts, and nougat.
Its signature triangular shape existed from the beginning and has been legally preserved since 1909. It is generally accepted that it was inspired by local mountains, particularly the Matterhorn. At 4,478 meters (14,692 ft), it has a nearly perfect pyramidal shape and is one of the highest peaks in the Alps and Europe.
Although Toblerone is available in a variety of flavours, the first of these came in dark chocolate only in 1969, the white chocolate version in 1973, and later in 2008 the Fruit & Nut version.
It was acquired in 1990 by the American company Mondelez, formerly known as Kraft Foods.
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