The Barry Callebaut Salmonella Incident and what Keylink is doing to help
Posted: 24 Aug 2022
You may already have heard about supply issues at Barry Callebaut, but in case you haven’t, here’s an update on what’s happening.
On 27th June, 2022, Barry Callebaut detected a salmonella-positive chocolate production lot at its Wieze factory in Belgium. No contaminated chocolate entered the supply chain, but in response, all chocolate production at the Wieze factory and related moulding lines in Banbury were halted as a precautionary measure. Under the supervision of the relevant National Authorities, all production lines have had to be dismantled piece-by-piece and thoroughly cleaned to eliminate any possible trace of the bacteria. This process is nearing completion and the first cleaned chocolate lines in Wieze and Banbury are soon to be restarted, with a gradual ramp-up to full capacity expected in the following weeks.
How is this affecting the chocolate supply chain?
It is mostly only Callebaut and Barry Callebaut branded products that are directly affected but there is an inevitable ‘knock-on’ effect on other products/brands, especially chips, chunks and decorations.
Many products have now become unavailable as stocks have been run down and we currently have little guidance on when they will come back into stock. The nature of this stoppage of key Barry Callebaut production facilities means that it will inevitably take some time for them to rebuild stock levels, with delays for some products potentially extending up to Christmas.
What is Keylink doing to help?
From the time of this incident, we have been building up our stock levels as much as possible in order to insulate you from stock shortages wherever we can and for as long as we can.
However, some items have unfortunately already become unavailable and it is inevitable that more will follow in the coming weeks or months. For these items, we have launched our brand new ‘Alternative Products’ programme. Wherever we are able to suggest an alternative product or a creative way to get by, you will see a teal “Find Alternatives” button on the relevant product page.
You can view the Alternative Products page by clicking the image below:
How Should You React…
First of all, we recommend that you do not panic buy, not least because of the strain that may put on your cashflow at a time when you will be wanting to preserve your cash.
However we clearly cannot say that we will not run out of any specific item at some point, but equally we are hopeful that many items will become available again at Barry Callebaut without too big a delay. On chocolate, even if we run out of certain grades – including core grades – we should always have an alternative chocolate to offer you.
That said, if there are certain products that are critical to your recipes, then please do get in touch with us and we’d be happy to discuss your best course of action with you. Where something is not available we will do our best to help you find an alternative.