Cadbury owner Mondelez latest firm to pull back Russian trade

The consumer giant, which also owns brands including Oreo and Toblerone, said it is “scaling back all non-essential activities” in Russia.

Henry Saker-Clark
Thursday 10 March 2022 12:33
Chocolate being made in the Bournville factory. Owner Mondelez is “scaling back” its Russian business (Marie Hill/PA)
Chocolate being made in the Bournville factory. Owner Mondelez is “scaling back” its Russian business (Marie Hill/PA)

Cadbury owner Mondelez has become the latest in a growing list of firms to reduce operations in Russia over the invasion of Ukraine.

The consumer giant, which also owns brands including Oreo and Toblerone, said it is “scaling back all non-essential activities” there but stopped short of halting operations completely.

Describing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as “very concerning”, it said it will continue to supply food into the country and support workers in the region.

The move comes after a raft of food and drink rivals, including Dutch brewer Heineken and Swiss firm Nestle, acted in response to the war, launched by Russian President Vladimir Putin on February 24.

In a letter to staff, Mondelez International chief executive officer Dirk Van de Put said the firm “condemns this unjust aggression”.

The group said its operations remain closed in Ukraine and said it is prioritising the safety of staff in the embattled country.

Mr Van de Put said: “As a food company, we are scaling back all non-essential activities in Russia while helping maintain continuity of the food supply during the challenging times ahead.

“We will also continue to support our colleagues in the market who are facing great uncertainty.

“We will focus our operation on basic offerings, discontinue all new capital investments and suspend our advertising media spending.

“We recognise this is a highly dynamic and very concerning situation that we will continue to assess and adjust as needed.”

Uniqlo owner Fast Retailing is also halting operations in Russia (Ian West/PA)

Elsewhere, the owner of fashion retailer Uniqlo confirmed a U-turn and said it will now suspend operations in Russia.

Earlier this week, Fast Retailing said it would keep Russian shops open, describing clothes as a “necessity of life”.

However, it has now halted operations in the face of “operational challenges” due to the “worsening of the conflict situation”.

Japanese gaming giants Sony and Nintendo also announced on Thursday that they will suspend deliveries of consoles in Russia as a result of the war.

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