New Zealand panic buys Marmite

They say you either love Marmite or you hate it – and it seems Kiwis can’t get enough of it after low supplies of the sticky substance sparked ‘Marmageddon’ fears in New Zealand.

New Zealanders have taken the impending shortage extremely seriously, with fans hoarding jars of the stuff before it runs out.

Stockists have reported shoppers panic buying baskets of Marmite, while the country’s prime minister, John Key, also revealed he is running dangerously low on supplies and has begun rationing the popular British food spread.

Marmite manufacturers in New Zealand say they will dispatch the last remaining supplies of the product this week after its factories were destroyed in last year’s devastating earthquakes in Christchurch and production came to a halt.

‘I can confirm there was a rush on Marmite yesterday,’ said a spokeswoman for grocery chain Foodstuffs.

‘Clearly Kiwis took the news of the impending shortage very seriously.’

Another food chain company added: ‘We anticipate running out of stock of Marmite in the next two to three weeks across all our stores, and unfortunately we have no control of the situation.’

One chancer has attempted to cash in on the situation by putting a jar up for sale on an online auction site, with the bidding starting at £2,000.

The country’s population of 4.4million simply love the stuff and get through over 640 tonnes of the dark brown paste every year.

Prime minister Key is also a major fan of the product, after telling TV3 this week: ‘I’m going to have to go thin I’m afraid.

‘I have a very small amount in my office and once that runs out I’m obviously aware that supplies are very short.’

However he angered Marmite fans after suggesting he would switch to ‘inferior’ alternative Vegemite.

The brand’s parent company Sanitarium said it hopes to resume production by July.

Marmite lovers have been advised to use the spread sparingly and on hot toast to make supplies last longer.


Join our mailing list to receive the latest news directly in your email inbox.