UK & World News
Fake Willy Wonka Chocolate Bar Warning For UK
Chocolate lovers around the country are being conned by fake Wonka chocolate bars containing useless golden tickets.
Trading standards officers say "massive profits" are being made from the bogus chocolate - which takes advantage of the famous promotion in Roald Dahl's book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
In the book and film adaptations starring Johnny Depp and Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka, children who found a rare golden ticket inside the wrapper won a trip to the eccentric chocolatier's factory.
Investigators believe the illegal batch of bars is being sold directly to shops and convenience stores by travelling salesmen.
They carry a message on the packaging that says "five lucky winners will find a golden ticket inside".
In fact every bar contains a "winning" ticket - but with no information about how to claim the prize.
The bars contravene labelling requirements and cannot legally be described as milk chocolate. It is thought those behind the scam may be repackaging cheap chocolate and selling it on with a huge mark-up.
Nestle, which owns the copyright for Wonka chocolate, has confirmed it has no Wonka competitions operating in Britain and has not sold the product since 2010.
The fake bars have no branding or company address on them and do not carry the Nestle trademark.
Trading standards have had reports of the counterfeit chocolate in areas including Suffolk, Lanarkshire, South Wales, London and most recently North East Lincolnshire.
North East Lincolnshire Council said in a statement: "Following seizures elsewhere in the country, officers have found some of the fake goods at a local sweet shop.
"Officers are currently checking other retailers to seize any remaining bars still on sale. They will also be reminding food businesses of the importance of sourcing stock from reputable suppliers.
"There are currently no known health risks, but the origin of these bars is unknown."