Live from the Caucasus: Walter Jon Williams: The Nutella War: "Conflicts within a former Soviet republic are now posing a threat to the world’s supply of Nutella...
...the disturbingly tasty Italian hazelnut-chocolate spread.
Hazelnuts are the second-largest export (after copper ore) from the Republic of Georgia, which is the third largest exporter of hazelnuts in the world. Georgia has also exported hazelnuts from its breakaway Russian-puppet republic, Abkhazia.
But new rules in the European Union threatens Abkhazia’s exports, because they now require an origin certificate, and the EU has no relations with Abkhazia. Abkhazian exporters would have to apply for a Georgian certificate, and thus admit they’re a part of Georgia after all— which no patriotic Abkhazian could ever do (without being shot in the back of the head).
"Russia is our strategic partner, and demand for hazelnuts is low there,” says Adgur Ardzinba, the economy minister in Abkhazia’s self-proclaimed government, which only Russia and a few other states recognise. “We have to give priority to products that are in high demand [in Russia], such as citrus and wine.”
Well, why should the Russians expect Nutella to pay for their puppet republic? Let them do it themselves, and learn to make theirs own hazelnut spread!
Though it turns out that something called the “brown marmorated stinkbug” has no respect for national borders, and is busy devouring the hazelnut crops of both Georgia and Abkhazia.
Down with the marmorated stinkbugs! Let all factions unite against the threat of marmoritism! Let all the Caucasus unite against the insect peril, and save the world supply of Nutella!