I feared things would change as soon as Cadbury's came on the scene. I suspected they would gradually introduce cheaper ingredients into their products, more sugar and lower grade cocoa for example, hoping that people wouldn't notice! But I was also hopeful I would be proved wrong - I do love G&B almond chocolate - and perhaps they would stick to a tried and tested good quality product. Oh dear!
I don't know if they have changed the grade of cocoa or not, but I wasn't impressed with their introduction of a "creamy" milk chocolate which for ages they were flogging everywhere for £1. My guess is they thought this would appeal to the mass market. It didn't appeal to me, it tasted disgusting and overly sweet on the one occasion I tried it.
I am really enraged. It seems they are now putting milk powder into their 70% and 85% dark chocolate. These always used to be dairy free (as any quality dark chocolate worth its salt should be) and was beloved by vegans. I don't know when they first started doing this. I found out today when this was pointed out to me in our local organic shop. It had never occurred to me to check the label again - I'd done this many years ago when I first started buying it and all was fine and dandy then.
I have just done some background research and came across the following statement from G&B on the Goodness Direct blog. Apparently it's due to the fact that there may be cross contamination in the factory. Reading straight off the packet, it cleary states "contains milk ingredient". However, soya, cereal and nuts (which are also labelled as potential contaminants) are not given as listed ingredients. Seems suspicious to me. "May contain" and "contains" have quite different meanings.
So, beware all you Green & Black's chocolate lovers, your chocolate may not be what it used to be. But mostly, beware vegans and those of you with lactose intolerance - the dark chocolate you have known and loved all these years may no longer be dairy free.