Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Marmite is Our Mate

Mmmm marmite! I grew up on it, so a cheese sandwich is incomplete without a smear of the black gold.

But whats that little fella doing lurking behind the real Mcoy.....

In this country, the brand 'Marmite' belongs to 'Sanitarium' - an Australasian food company that is owned by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. They sell something they have the cheek to call Marmite (albeit in a charmless straight sided plastic pot) but their brown goo doesn't look, smell or taste like real Marmite. It is foul and bland with the consistency of mud. Here's their ad - with a kiwi twist.

This sad situation led me for many years to cajole friends and family into stashing jars of the real product in their suitcases for me and once I came back from London with a huge Costco family size bucket which lasted close to a year.

Now a new development.... lurking at the very top of our supermarket shelves, almost in the heavens we spied this little fella called 'Our Mate', dressed in the manner we know and love - the podgy, round black suit with a yellow hat. I know not how or why this happened but as you can see, the little one has a good role model to live up to in our kitchen.

For the uninitiated.

Interesting footnote: In 1923 an enterprising Australian merchant, Fred Walker, decided to provide Marmite with some competition. He developed a new product which he called Parwill, on the basis that if "Ma might", "Pa will". This didn't work but resulted in the Kraft product now known as Vegemite.

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