First toilet paper and now Marmite spread, the world has gone mad in the wake of COVID-19.
To understand what’s at stake here and why BrewDog is offering to help, one has to understand what Marmite is because it’s mostly a UK thing.
What The Hell Is Marmite?
Marmite is a sticky, dark brown food paste made with yeast extract which has a salty powerful flavor. It is a by-product of the yeast used in brewing beer.
And Marmite couldn’t be more polarizing…Its marketing slogan: “Love it or hate it.”
Primarily popular in the UK, Marmite is traditionally eaten as a savory spread on bread, toast, biscuits or crackers, and other similar baked products, often spread thinly with butter or margarine.
But Marmite-heads seem to find unlimited use for the product, sometimes adding it to hot water to create a steamy Marmite drink, or using it to enrich casseroles and stews.
Marmite was invented during the late 19th century when German scientist Justus von Liebig discovered that brewer’s yeast could be concentrated, bottled and eaten. [
During 1902, the Marmite Food Extract Company was formed in Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, England and the by-product yeast needed back then was provided by Bass Brewery. Marmite is currently produced by Dutch-British company Unilever.
So Why the Marmite Shortage?
When bars and pubs shutdown in Europe and the UK due to the coronavirus, breweries slowed production and that lead to a shortage of the brewers yeast extract which is essential to making Marmite.
So less brewers yeast extract equals less Marmite in UK stores and soon Marmite-heads started jumping ugly.
Speaking with The Telegraph a Unilever spokesperson explained….
“We’ve seen a high demand for Marmite over the last few months with more people making meals at home during lockdown, which, coupled with the fact that breweries have been supplying less yeast, resulted in a temporary reduction in the full range of Marmite pack sizes being available.”
To stem the pending crisis global craft brewer BrewDog (who can be as polarizing as Marmite) got in touch with Unilever, offering to help out with the supply issue.
And never missing a self-promotional opportunity, the brewer posted a picture of a Marmite jar emblazoned with a sticker stating ‘powered by Punk IPA yeast’, a reference to BrewDog’s popular India Pale Ale…
It would not be the first time that Marmite has collaborated with a brewery according to the Drinks Business. ”In February 2007, the company released a limited edition Guinness Marmite. Produced in a batch of 300,000 250g jars, the yeast extract used was made with 30% Guinness yeast”