Brits bitter over Cadbury takeover

The Cadbury chocolate factory is pictured in Birmingham, central England. AFP PHOTO/PAUL ELLIS (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

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Steve Chiotakis: It was a four month fight for British chocolatier Cadbury. But yesterday it finally agreed to a takeover by the U.S. food giant Kraft. The final price comes out to just under $20 billion. But as Christopher Werth reports from London, the news left a whole lot of sad and concerned people in its wake.


Christopher Werth: Forty years ago, Phil Davis started this little clothing store in the shadow of Cadbury's factory in Bournville, just outside Birmingham. The town was built by the Quakers who founded Cadbury 186 years ago. Davis says that when the chocolate is being made, the smell wafts in through the shop door.

Phil Davis: We love everything about Cadbury's, and what it stands for, and I think, you know, this is the last great British company that we've got.

Many here oppose the Kraft takeover. For the British, Cadbury is almost a part of the culture as Shakespeare.

David Bailey is with Coventry University. He says Brits have a strong emotional attachment to the company.

David Bailey: Many of us grew up eating Cadbury chocolate. It's different to American chocolate. It's a kind of nuttier, more caramely taste to it. So to have it taken over is a kind of huge issue for many of us, cause we think back to our childhoods. And there is a fear about, you know, an American takeover of a much-loved British company.

Workers here worry that with all the borrowing Kraft will have to do to finance this deal, jobs cuts will be soon to follow. Cadbury employs around 7,000 people in the U.K. and Ireland.

In London, I'm Christopher Werth for Marketplace.

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