What Came First, Easter or the Egg-Laying Bunny?


real easter egg

Neither (the egg-laying bunny or Easter came first): It was the chocolate-loving British public, which will scarf down chocolate in any form on any occasion – or so some press reports would have you believe.

So how did that public react when Cadbury’s and other candy companies altered their packaging in recent years so the word Easter, once prominent on chocolate egg packaging at this time of year, was either eliminated or relegated to a spot on the back of the pack?

They kept right on buying their chocolate eggs!

But now they have an option to buy one called ‘The Real Easter Egg,’ from Manchester-based  Meaningful Chocolate Company.

An article on The Blaze website says that company “emerged six years ago with the goal of spreading the Christian message through a variety of Easter and Advent products. Instead of politically correct bunnies, flowers and chicks, Meaningful Chocolate Company openly declares Christ as the reason for all of the festivity.”

The Blaze continues:

But since the company first walked onto the Easter candy scene, its founder, David Marshall, said the descriptions on other company’s Easter treats have become more and more bleak.

As an example, the company mentioned Cadbury’s Easter Egg Trail Pack, whose name was changed to “Egg Hunt Pack.” In addition, this season’s label on Nestlé’s Quality Street Easter egg reads: “Large Milk Chocolate Egg.” Another Nestlé product, the Milkybar Easter Egg, now has the blunt name, “Milkybar White Chocolate Egg,” proving that Cadbury is not the only company to blame for the pull.

“It looks like there is a trend,” Marshall told Telegraph.

“A lot of businesses are not comfortable with the religious aspect of the festival,” he continued. “If they want to make their product as attractive to as many people as possible it could well be that they want to remove references to the Christian festival because that will be seen as attaching to one faith tradition.”

A spokesman for Nestlé told Telegraph that there had been “no deliberate decision” to remove the word “Easter” from its holiday products and assured that customers would make an “automatic” connection even if the word was not explicitly mentioned.

“Chocolate eggs have been synonymous with Easter and the Easter story since the beginning of the last century and the association is now an automatic one,” he said. “There has been no deliberate decision to drop the word Easter from our products and the name is still widely used at Nestlé.”

Cadbury has also denied accusations that it has caved to secular pressure and removed Easter from its iconic chocolates, stating that the word “Easter” still appears, if not prominently, on the back of its creme egg wrappers.

A website focused almost entirely on statistics — including some that nobody should want to be aware of! — just published a list of “14 Staggering Easter 2016 Sales Statistics”. Among them: Sales associated with Easter in the UK were expected to be some  £775 million this year. That is, indeed, a ‘staggering’ statistic!

I encourage you to ask your friends, family and colleagues to check out what my two blogs – Food TradeTrends.com and YouSayWhat.info – do in the interest of providing information you might, otherwise, never become aware of. You never know: Some of my research could prove useful, or possibly amusing, to you (and them).

(In the few months these blogs have been published, they’ve been seen, between them, in no fewer than 30 countries! I’m pretty staggered by that statistic!)

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