The U.S. (allegedly) bans Vegemite...can Marmite be far behind?
I really had to look twice at the calendar to make sure I hadn't suddenly skipped ahead a few months to April 1st when I read this news story:
THE US has banned Vegemite, even to the point of searching Australians for jars of the spread when they enter the country.
I must admit that I am not a fan of Vegemite. However, I am a diehard fan of its bitter rival in the world of salty yeast extract spreads, Marmite. Since the offending ingredient that got Vegemite banned is folic acid, I immediately became concerned - does Marmite have added (as opposed to naturally occuring, as in many vegetables) folic acid too?
This means, Marmite may get banned in the U.S. too, if this convoluted logic is followed.
I am wondering if this means we will have to set up clandestine smuggling operations to keep English expats in the U.S. supplied with Marmite.
I'm wondering if such supply chains exist already for Vegemite. If so, all power to you, intrepid Aussies!
Will the Australian government now retaliate by banning peanut butter? After all, a small percentage of the population is seriously allergic to nuts. Besides, it was invented in America. It must be evil.
If Marmite follows, the British government may fight back by revoking Ruby Wax's visa.
Seriously, this is just insanity. What idiot government official got this law through? And who are the customs officers hassling travelers for yeast extract?
[Edit later:] It's not quite sure if this ban is a fact. We'll see if it turns out to be an urban myth.
If it was a hoax I wonder who initiated it? Did the writer of the article intend it to be a joke? If so it was a pretty good one, combining patriotism, the heavy-handidness of food police and government restrictions on our private choices, anti-Americanism (or anti-Bushism maybe) and of course, a food that people have a very strong reaction to, for or against.
When I used to hang out on the Travel Forum on Compuserve in the early '90s, the longest discussion thread ever, which literally went on for months, was about Vegemite vs. Marmite. I just say, let black, viscous salty spreads live forever!
Final note: for what it's worth, Amazon US carries Marmite, (even a 12 pack) but not Vegemite, as of today.
[Addendum: I comparing Marmite, Vegemite and Cenovis (what?) head to head.]