Marmite's October return now unlikely

By Ben Chapman-Smith

Marmite stocks started running low earlier this year. Photo / Glenn Taylor
Marmite stocks started running low earlier this year. Photo / Glenn Taylor

Marmite-loving Kiwis hoping to see the black gold back on supermarket shelves by the end of this month may be forced to wait a little longer.

Sanitarium announced on Facebook today that although repairs to its Christchurch factory were progressing well, it was still unable to confirm when Marmite would be back in production.

Marmite was initially expected to return to shelves in July, but that date was pushed back to October after Sanitarium found further structural damage at the company's Christchurch factory.

The factory was closed in November last year due to earthquake damage and it is the only one that makes the yeast-based breakfast spread.

Reconstruction continued to be a complex project, as repair work had to meet the new building codes, Sanitarium said on Facebook.

"We still have some final interior work to complete before the repair and recommissioning of our production line throughout October/November so that the time-honoured craft of making and blending Marmite can begin."

Once production was up and running, there would still be a time lapse before availability of Marmite on shelves, the statement said.

"We have not set a back-on-shelf date yet as we anticipate we will have some production hurdles to overcome.

"As soon as we know when that will be, we will let everyone know via Facebook and the media."

As Marmite stocks began to dwindle earlier this year, the situation was dubbed "Marmageddon".

In response, Sanitarium began a "Don't Freak" campaign, including ads fronted by former All Black coach Graham Henry, amid a mass outcry over the shortage.

The Marmite Facebook page has attracted over 55,000 likes.

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