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Wispa is a brand of chocolate bar manufactured by Cadbury UK. The bar was launched in 1981 as a trial version in North East England and with its success it was introduced nationally in 1983. It was seen as a competitor to Rowntree's Aero (now owned by Nestlé). In 2003, as part of a relaunch of the Cadbury Dairy Milk brand, the Wispa brand was discontinued and the product relaunched as "Dairy Milk Bubbly". As part of the relaunch, the product was reshaped as a standard moulded bar (similar to other 'Dairy Milk' products) instead of a whole-bar count-line. However, in 2007, helped by an internet campaign, the Wispa bar was relaunched, albeit for a "limited period". In October 2008 Wispa returned again to shops in the UK and Ireland due to the chocolate bar's popularity during the previous limited period release.
A product known as Cadbury's Wispa, resembling a moulded Dairy Milk bar with bubbles and with different packaging, is available in some other countries, including Romania.
The tiny bubbles within the chocolate are formed by aerating the molten chocolate with gas, typically carbon dioxide or nitrogen, while at a high pressure, which causes microscopic gas bubbles to form within the liquid. The liquid is then brought down to atmospheric pressure as it cools, causing the gas pockets to expand and become trapped in the chocolate.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (September 2009)|
Velvety textured original Wispa, launched in 1981, relaunched in 2007 (Temporary) and 2008 (Permanent).
- Endless Wispa
Extra long Wispa bar launched in 2012 and sold again for Christmas 2013 also in a Wispa Gold version
- Wispa Hot Chocolate
Instant Hot Chocolate with a Frothy texture, launched April 2013
- Wispa Gold
Wispa with caramel, launched in 1995, relaunched for a limited time in 2009. Discontinued in 2010. Relaunched in 2011 (Permanent).
- Wispa Mint
Wispa with mint filling, launched in 1997, currently discontinued.
- Wispa Bite
Wispa with caramel and biscuit, launched in 2000. Currently discontinued.
Wispa with coffee flavoured caramel, launched in 2000. Currently discontinued.
- Wispa Easter Egg
Sold at Easter, first sold in the 1980s, sold again from 2009 onwards.
- Wispa Duo
This "king size" Wispa, contains two smaller bars within one wrapper; similar design and name to the Mars Duo. Wispa Duo was launched in 2010. Discontinued in 2010 for a short period and brought back in 2012 (Permanent).
- Bitsa Wispa
Announced on Facebook, a new bag of Wispa bites. Launched in 2012.
- Wispa McFlurry
Wispa pieces with chocolate sauce swirled in soft vanilla ice cream. Sold for a limited time in 2008 and again in 2012 with a new Wispa Gold version.
- Wispa Gold McFlurry
Wispa pieces with caramel sauce swirled in soft vanilla ice cream. Launched for a limited time in 2012.
- Wispa Ice Cream Bar
Wispa pieces smothered in chocolate ice cream with a coating of milk chocolate. Launched in 2009
The bar was launched by teaser advertisements in 1983 bearing the phrase "Have you heard the Wispa?" which did not identify the product as a chocolate bar. Original Wispa advertisements, all performed to camera in front of a black background, featured well-known actors such as Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne, Victoria Wood, Julie Walters, Simon Cadell, and Ruth Madoc. John Le Mesurier and Arthur Lowe also made a final appearance as their characters from Dad's Army.
At the time of its comeback in 2008, Wispa was re-launched using large outdoor posters featuring the tagline "It's back. Apparently." and smaller, roadside posters featuring conversations about Wispa returning, which read; "Apparently, the Wispa thing is true. It's coming back. Finally. Brilliant." In December 2009, Wispa aired a television advert entitled "For the love of Wispa", starring members of the public recruited from an earlier advertising campaign. The advert included cheerleaders, choirs and grandparents, and was aired on 20 December at 8 pm on ITV.
In 2009, to mark the return of Wispa Gold, Wispa gave away the launch advertising campaign for the bar to fans.[clarification needed] The outdoor poster campaign which followed saw over 7,000 submissions and featured over 900 different posters across Britain and Ireland".
In May 2012, Cadbury Wispa launched a new advertising campaign targeted at young adults, who possibly had not tasted Wispa until its permanent return in 2008. The campaign focused on idea of irresponsible fun, with a strapline of "time well mis-spent". Adverts included short film entitled "5 Friends, One Mountain and a Very Big Inflatable, which followed a group of friends carrying an inflatable character up a steep rocky mountain. This advert followed the launch of the "Cadbury Bitsa Wispa", a bag of bite-sized miniature versions of Cadbury Wispa chocolate. After launch, Bitsa Wispa became worth £3.5m.
Discontinuation and relaunch
In 2003 Cadbury made Dairy Milk into a family brand by taking existing brands and marketing them as Dairy Milk sub-brands. As part of this change, the Wispa brand was phased out and replaced by "Dairy Milk Bubbly".
Since the discontinuation of the Wispa bar in 2003, a host of internet campaigns and an online petition to bring it back slowly gained momentum. During Iggy and the Stooges' 2007 performance at Glastonbury Festival, several Wispa fans invaded the stage armed with a banner saying "Bring Back the Wispa." In addition, several "Bring Back Wispa" groups on Bebo, MySpace and Facebook were set up. In August 2007, these campaigns prompted Cadbury to announce that the bar would be relaunched on 8 October 2007 for an initial limited production of 23 million bars, with a permanent return possible if sales are high enough. Predictions that the relaunched product would be marketed as Wispa Classic proved unfounded, and the new Wispa hit shelves in similar packaging to the original bar, a combination of the original colours and the slightly updated lettering style of the later bars. There have been claims that the spontaneous 'campaign' was pre-planned and orchestrated by Cadbury, rather than by members of the public.
On 24 August 2007, the first box of the relaunched Wispas was put up for auction on eBay, with a press release from Cadbury saying that the auction was real and that the proceeds (the winning bid was £195.00) were going toward the Cadbury Charity, Ghana for the Source.
In February 2008, Rebecca Wells auctioned an original out-of-date Wispa bar, which she found in a sofa, on eBay for the charity LAM Action. The initial winning bid of £2,550 was found by eBay to be "unauthorised". It has since been re-listed, and raised £1000 for the charity.
The bar returned on a permanent basis in October 2008. Prior to the permanent launch of Wispa, for a limited time a Wispa McFlurry was available at McDonald's restaurants until 30 September 2008. During Easter 2009, a Wispa Easter Egg was made.
On 14 September 2009, Wispa Gold was relaunched for a limited time, following a Facebook campaign. The product was initially released for sale at Foreways on Warwick Road in Carlisle two weeks earlier, after the shop had been chosen from many around the country as part of a competition. As at 20 January 2010, Wispa Gold is once again available in Australia (having been previously marketed as the Crave bar) following parallel importing by Coles Supermarkets.
On 26 August 2011, it was announced that Wispa Gold would return permanently in November in support of team GB at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
In April 2013, Cadbury launched Wispa Hot Chocolate and backed it with an advertising campaign with the slogan ‘froth out’. The television advert featured the ‘frothybeast’ giving the general public an insight to his ‘frothy life’. The ‘frothybeast’ advertising campaign lasted until the end of April 2013.
- Wallop, Harry (20 August 2007), "Cadbury plans Wispa revival", The Daily Telegraph (London), retrieved 26 August 2007[dead link]
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- "Laughing gas makes best bubbles in chocolate. The bar is currently manufactured in Dublin, Ireland.". Food Navigator. 18 August 2007. Retrieved 27 October 2007.
- "How can changes in pressure on Earth help us find out about Jupiter (and put bubbles in chocolate)?". physics.org. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- "Cadbury Wispa official site, Wispa Duo". 25 June 2010.
- "Cadbury Wispa Duo Facebook page". 25 June 2010.
- "For the Love of Wispa". Cadbury. 6 January 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2010.
- "Cadbury to revive Wispa chocolate bar for limited period". Talking Retail. 18 August 2007. Retrieved 26 August 2007.
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- "Cadbury plans Wispa Easter egg launch and ad campaign". Mad.co.uk. 10 July 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
- mad.co.uk. "Marketing Advertising Design Blog – Insight, News & Views of the mad.co.uk news » Wispa it: a planned campaign?". Madcomments.co.uk. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
- "'Rare' Wispa auction in meltdown". BBC. 11 February 2008. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
- "Online bids for 'rare' Wispa bar". BBC. 10 February 2008. Retrieved 10 February 2008.
- "Cadbury brings back Wispa permanently 2008-08-03". Marketingweek.co.uk. 10 April 2008. Retrieved 5 June 2009.
- [dead link]
- "Wispa Gold makes a comeback". Talkingretail.com. 29 May 2009. Retrieved 5 June 2009.
- "Wispa Gold is Back – Exclusive to Carlisle". newsandstar.co.uk. 29 August 2009.
- "Cadbury reveals next wave of Olympic products". talkingretail.com. 26 August 2011.