German police said the hazelnut chocolate spread was taken from a parked semi-trailer, The Telegraph reports.
The theft, estimated at about 16,000 euros ($21,000), took place past weekend in the city of Niederaula in the central state of Hesse, said police.
In the mentioned region there were other large quantities of food products stolen, including five tons of coffee worth 30,000 euros taken in March and 34,000 cans of an energy drink in August.
According to a police spokesperson, the site of the thefts is near a road transport hub not far from Frankfurt where truck drivers living in the region tend to park their lorries at weekends.
Last month, Columbia University in New York City re its students had been stealing as much as $5,000 worth of Nutella from its dining halls.
The Dining Services department told reporters that students were consuming around 100 pounds of the product every day. It’s believed many students were stealing the treat and letting it go to waste. This can explain why the school was going through so much of the product every week.
“The mundane fact, according to the University’s Division of Dining Services, is that the weekly cost of the Nutella supply is actually less than 10 percent of the amount originally reported on a student blog and quickly picked up by other media,” the school said in an official statement.
Last year, Malaysia’s official Palm Oil Council criticized a French move to slap a 300 per cent rax rise on palm oil – a key ingredient in Nutella.
“The proposal is based on inaccurate claims that palm oil is bad for health and nutrition, and that Malaysia does not respect the environment,” the council said.
It insisted that palm oil is “a healthy, natural and important product which 240,000 small farmers in Malaysia are proud to produce” and urged the French government to reject the call for a tax increase.”
The use of palm oil became one of the t0p issues to discuss in France and other parts of Europe due to links to deforestation and ill health with several key French retailers promising to ban or cut the vegetable oil, or switch to sustainable sources.
However, food manufacturers strongly disagree. “Palm oil as such is not bad for health,” Jean-Rene Buisson, head of France’s Ania food industry association said. “Punitive acts such as raising a tax by 300pc to push industrials to use something else is absolutely scandalous,” he said.
The makers of Nutella, the Italian company Ferrero, said at the time that they would not change the recipe even if France, its biggest market, endorses proposals to quadruple the tax on palm oil.
Frederic Thil, French director for Ferrero, the Italian company that makes the spread, told Le Parisien: “The arguments are unfair and the repercussions would be catastrophic.”
French people consume an average of 2 kg of palm oil a year and the country as a whole 126,000 tonnes. If adopted the tax would add 40 million euros to France’s state health insurance pot.