Skip to main content

Marmite, Do You Love It or Hate It?


What is Marmite?

Well, marmite is a very thick yeast extract savoury spread. It's black in colour and it is by product of brewing beer. The whole marmite range is vegetarian and vegan and is also classes as halal. It can be used in recipes, and also suitable for sandwiches and spreading on toast. It's made from yeast extract, vegetable juice concentrate, salt and natural flavourings. It also contains celery.

The history of Marmite

Love it or hate it, marmite has been around for more than 100 years. It's definitely one of those spreads that you will either really love or really hate eating. Where did the name marmite come from? Well, it actually derived from a small earthenware pot called a marmite. It's pronounced MARMEET. This is what marmite originally came in. And an interesting fact is that on modern day marmite glass jars, you can still see a picture of that pot on the front.

It was launched back in 1902 by The Marmite Food Company in Burton-on-Trent, England. The company was later rebranded as Marmite Ltd. It was in 1857 thought that a French Microbiologist called Louis Pasteur learned that alcoholic fermentations were conducted by living yeasts. And a German Scientist by the name of Justus Freiherr accidentally found out that waste product from yeast which was made in brewing beer could be made into a meaty, vegetarian concentrate. Justus lived from 1903 - 1973. He was the first person to make bouillon, which was the meat extract, or the process of it. That eventually got trademarked as OXO, which are stock cubes you put in your meat dishes.

Marmite is an acquired taste, and right from the very start vegetarians liked it. And by 1907 the product had become so popular they had to open another factory in London. An interesting note is that during World War 1 it was all part of the rations for the troops. The reason behind this is because it is packed with vitamins and minerals like B1. It also helped to combat diseases such as Beriberi.

Marmite is currently owned by a company called Unilever, which took over in 2000 when it merged with Best Foods.

This is the earthenware jar it originally came in.

This is the earthenware jar it originally came in.

Scroll to Continue

My thoughts on marmite.

Well personally, I love it. I know a lot of people don't. And when I bring the subject up with people, most of them tell me they hate it lol. It's always an interesting topic of conversation. But there must be a lot of people who like it too, as it's been around for all these years. Marmite comes in other names across the world like Vegemite. Bovril is also another form of marmite, but Bovril is more one you drink rather than eat by adding hot water to it. Bovril is very nice too.


Marmite lover/hater poll

Marmite Yeast Extract

The official Marmite website.

  • Marmite
    This is the official Marmite website where you can find out all about the marmite range and recipe ideas.

© 2022 Louise Powles

Related Articles