For once, the shortage cannot be blamed on Brexit or disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic but a straightforward supply and demand issue after Cadbury owner Mondelēz failed to predict a late spring ice-cream sales rush in the UK.
A Mondelēz spokesperson told this publication: "We are seeing a recent increase in demand for our Cadbury 99 Flake in the UK and Ireland that we had not expected. The product is still available to order and we're continuing to work closely with our customers."
The ice cream versions of the popular Flake are half the size of the original, and are made in a factory in Egypt, as well as a Mondelēz facility in Coolock in Ireland.
News of the shortage has caused alarm on Twitter with some fans proposing alternatives.
Cadbury's Flake multipack, split them in half. No one will ever know... pic.twitter.com/50cFFZpuIF— ©️ (@dudhwala) May 17, 2021
Cadbury UK revealed the 99 name is a reference to the 99 guards who protected the Italian monarchy. “The name was used to appeal to Italian expats living in the UK and Ireland who were active in the ice-cream trade,” the company said.