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'99 Problems: Tramore shop-owner says Brexit has led to a shortage in flakes

'99 Problems: Tramore shop-owner says Brexit has led to a shortage in flakes

Some people like a scoop of ice cream, others prefer it whirled up in a tub, but for lovers of the '99, the supply of the Irish delicacy could be cut short this summer.

Over the past number of months, the implication of the UK leaving the European Union has been felt by shops and businesses in the Republic who would have regularly imported products from Britain.

For shops that sell 99 ice-creams like Beach World in Tramore, there has been a massive scramble to stock up on Cadbury’s Flakes. 

The owner of the shop on Strand Road Declan O’Connor says that due to difficulties getting the Flakes, and he potentially may not be able to sell 99s once the stock runs out.


“I got a phone call a couple of weeks ago to tip me off about the fact Cadbury’s in England didn’t have any '99 Flakes in stock.

“There was a big scramble to see if we could get as many as we could to try and keep us going until they’re available again.

“Potentially there isn’t going to be any '99s and a '99 is the Flake – other than that it’s just a plain old cone,” O’Connor says.

DG Foods Ltd. is a Waterford company that supplies local businesses with international products – many of whom are based in the UK. Andrew Hepburn is a Consultant for the company.


“There is a panic, and people are buying more stock than they normally would so for instance in Tramore – they want to make sure they’re the one that doesn’t run out of a Flake.

“We’re hoping that after another six months that things will start to level out and people will be bringing stock in via Europe because seems the tariffs from here to UK are higher.

“At the moment if you were to import stock from France that was already imported from the UK, it seems to be cheaper than if the stock was directly imported from the UK to Ireland,” Hepburn says.

 Economist Jim Power says until substitutes are made available on the Irish market, businesses in the Republic are going to continue to be stung

“Importance of brand can never be underestimated, and it will certainly take an effort to convince Irish consumers to move away from brands they’ve grown up with and they love.

“If those brands are not available or become more expensive though, consumers will have no choice but to explore other brands.

“If you can’t get flakes, some substitute is going to have to be found, but for businesses in the immediate term like the '99 sellers in Tramore, it’s going to be a challenging few months,” Power says.

This is due to an extra increase in demand for the product. Cadbury Flake 99’ is still available and we’re working through with our customers, so we can fulfil their requirements.

Meanwhile, Cadbury's in the UK say that the supply issue is in no way related to Brexit and is just due to in an increase in demand.

In a statement issued to WLR, Mondelez International - owners of Cadbury said:

"We are seeing a recent increase in demand for our Cadbury 99' Flake in Ireland. The product is still available to order and we're continuing to work closely with our customers."

Listen back to Aoife Kearns' report from Tramore here: