ONE of the UK’s best-loved childhood treats has made its long-awaited return to shelves after a 12 year hiatus.
Yowie is a premium chocolate treat that reveals a high quality collectable toy inside - coupled with fun learning for children and their families.
It was best-seller in the Nineties and Noughties.
Yet despite having sparked a frenzy that continues to this day, as enthusiasts swap and trade toys online to complete their collections, Yowie was discontinued back in 2005.
Now, after recent triumphant returns to both the Australian and the American markets - where Yowie is now a top 10 best selling chocolate and a number one revenue stream in the ‘Chocolate Novelty’ class - Yowie is now back in Britain, too.
It’s available in WHSmith and Center Parc stores with 24 new toys to collect.
The name Yowie relates to a mythical creature - a hairy, ape-like being described as Australia’s answer to America’s ‘Bigfoot’ or ‘Sasquatch’.
And the brand carries important messages about ecology, conservation and wildlife.
The Yowie mission statement is, ‘Save the natural world’ and they have an ongoing partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) which shows their commitment.
The WCS goal is to conserve the world's largest wild places in 16 priority regions, home to more than 50% of the world's biodiversity.
The new Yowie toys available to collect in the UK reflect this goal, covering species that range from ‘not threatened’ to ‘endangered’ in terms of their conservation status.
Animals include the Brown Bear, Clownfish, Giant Anteater, Gray Wolf, Giant Panda and the Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat.
They accompany the long-standing Yowie characters bandicoot ‘Boof’, crocodile ‘Crag’, wombat ‘Ditty’, koala ‘Nap’, red kangaroo ‘Rumble’ and platypus ‘Squish’.
Each of these characters are said to be guardians of a particular habitat, from swamps to rainforests and mountains.
Vic Azam, spokesperson for Yowie in the UK, said: “For us, it’s all about confection with a cause.
“We’re on a mission to get customers thinking about how to save the natural world, while also enjoying our tasty, ethically-sourced chocolate.
“And we’re delighted to have brought Yowie back to the UK where we know it’s always had something of a cult following. We hope the new collection proves as popular as previous series.
“And if you get a Giant Panda in your Yowie, you’re in luck, because they’re the rarest of the current collection!”
A spokesperson for the Wildlife Conservation Society Vice President for Global Conservation, said Yowie was ‘supporting WCS’s efforts to save iconic wildlife – gorillas, tigers, elephants, whales, jaguars, etc. – and wild places around the world.’
He added: "The animal replicas are a fun entryway to inspire people to care about their real-life wild counterparts – many of which are in danger of extinction."
Yowie has also launched a series of interactive games and quizzes on the yowieworld.com website to teach youngsters about the natural world.
The Yowie chocolate, meanwhile, is both ethically-sourced, and certified by the Rainforest Alliance, as well as nut, gluten and GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) free.
For more information head to http://yowieworld.com/uk/
"Were on a mission to get customers thinking about how to save the natural world, while also enjoying our tasty, ethically-sourced chocolate"