Why Are French Shoppers Rioting Over Nutella?

It's getting REAL.

We all love Nutella — that sweet, creamy, chocolate-hazelnut spread that makes any breakfast (or snack, or dessert) feel over-the-top indulgent. But is it worth rioting over?

French fans of the sweet spread seemed to lose their chocolate-hazelnut-loving minds when Intermarché, a popular French supermarket chain, dropped prices from 4,50 euros to 1,41 euros per jar, according to recent reporting from NPR. That’s the equivalent of lowering the cost-per-jar from about $5.60 to $1.75 in U.S. dollars.

That’s cheap, for sure — but the level of frenzy over the price drop was, apparently, unprecedented. French publication Le Parisien didn’t hesitate to call out the whole frantic episode as crazy, basically (I’m paraphrasing here) saying the incredibly low promo, about 70% off the usual price, caused a wave of insanity all over the country, from towns as far north as the Pas-de-Calais region and as far south as the Rhone river valley. An employee who works at an Intermarché location in northern France told Franceinfo, “At 8:15, there was already a waiting line of 200 people in front of the store” — which sounds eerily similar to the Black Friday madness we usually see here in the States come Thanksgiving.

It seems no French citizen, wherever they call home, is immune from the powerful effect of the chocolate-hazelnut spread’s magic.

A few more bewildered shoppers posted photos or videos of the riots to social media, capturing the Nutella-induced mad rush for the whole world to see.

After the fracas started to get out of control, many store managers and employees started intervening and trying to bring some order back by rationing jars, handing out one per customer. Even so, whole pallets of the stuff reportedly disappeared in mere minutes, and many of the grocery store’s employees reported scratches and wounds to outlets like Franceinfo due to the brawls.

How far would you go for your favorite food?

Photo: iStock

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