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Denmark Ban Marmite

May 24, 2011

Story courtesy of Guardian and thanks to @danMwilliams for alerting us to the story.

According to the advert, you either love it or hate it. As far as Marmite goes, the Danish government hates the stuff. That at least is the conclusion that many foreigners have drawn following a ban on the sticky brown yeast extract.

The sales ban enforces a law restricting products fortified with added vitamins. Food giant Kellogg’s withdrew some brands of breakfast cereal from Denmark when the legislation passed in 2004, but until now Marmite had escaped the attention of Danish authorities.

“What am I supposed to put on my toast now?” asked British advertising executive Colin Smith, who has lived in the country for six years. “I still have a bit left in the cupboard, but it’s not going to last long.”

Aside from inconveniencing foreigners, the ban has meant a serious economic loss for some. “Marmite was our most popular product,” said Marianne Ørum, who with her Scottish partner owns Abigail’s, a Copenhagen store selling foodstuffs from Britain and South Africa.

Ørum said that the order, which came by telephone from the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, was not entirely unexpected as they had previously been ordered to stop selling Australian Vegemite. “What is at issue here is that people in Denmark are not allowed to eat what they want to eat, even if it is perfectly legal to do so under EU law,” said Ørum.

Marmite is not the only product to have fallen foul: Horlicks, Ovaltine and Farley’s Rusks are similarly proscribed.

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