NZ earthquake leaves British expats with Marmite shortage

Published:  21 Mar at 6 PM
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As reported by the Daily Mail, many British expats living in New Zealand may soon experience a shortage in Marmite on their supermarket shelves.

Production of the yeast extract, which has been manufactured for many decades in Christchurch, was suspended because one of the plant towers was damaged by the 2011 earthquake. The factory has been closed for repairs.

New Zealand’s version of Marmite offers a different recipe from the British product. However, most expats say the flavour is not very different and they have been satisfied using it.

New Zealand Marmite, as described by people who have tasted both versions, boasts a slightly sweet flavour and is a bit weaker than the UK version.

Both spreads are made from yeast extract, which is a derivative of beer brewing. However, the UK version contains more calories, more protein and more carbs than the New Zealand version.

It was announced yesterday that the remaining stocks of British Marmite could be finished within weeks. Mr Pierre van Heerden, who is general manager of Sanitarium, the New Zealand manufacturer, has urged people to spread the product on hot toast since it would go further.
Panic has now started to set in - what will Marmite lovers do?

They have been told to shop around at different retailers for the imported UK version, although it could be hard to find and would not last long at the supermarkets. They could also splurge and buy a large jar for £60 – which is the asking price on an internet auction site.

Expats could also buy Vegemite, the Australian version. However, many have admitted this would be their last resort.
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