No one wants to spread Marmite love

PALOMA MIGONE
Last updated 14:16 07/05/2012
Marmite
Fairfax NZ
MIGHTY: Marmite stocks have dwindled nationwide, but it seems no one is desperate enough to buy a 25kg bucket of the black gold.

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Autism New Zealand is stuck with the ultimate Marmageddon survival kit - a 25kg bucket of Marmite - after it placed the black gold on Trade Me and attracted zero bids.

The bucket, which would normally retail for $200, was donated to the foundation in March by a woman who paid $2115 for it on the online auction site.

Autism NZ chief executive Alison Molloy today said the Marmite was a "very generous gift" and it was a "shame" no one was keen to buy it.

"We decided to put it back on Trade Me because there is such a shortage of this stuff," she said.

"Nobody picked it up, interestingly. I suspect it's because of its size."

Marmite-lovers have been suffering withdrawal symptoms since the yeasty spread began disappearing from the shelves in March.

Sanitarium had to suspend production of the breakfast staple after earthquake damage to a cooling tower at the company's Christchurch factory made the nearby Marmite building unsafe.

The spread was likely to be back in production by the middle of July and back on the shelves early August.

When news of the shortage broke, hundreds of auctions for Marmite appeared on Trade Me, but Gilmours Hamilton's 25kg bucket attracted the most attention, selling for $2115.

Instead of pocketing the money, Gilmours asked the winner to donate the funds, which went to KidsCan and the Christchurch Earthquake Fund. The bucket was then given to Autism NZ.

Molloy said after the failed Trade Me auction, the foundation was thinking of donating it to City Mission or the Salvation Army.

She was also keen to hear from kids or families who would benefit from the bucket.

"Certainly there are a number of families who would love to have it. If it doesn't go on TradeMe [again], we will certainly be giving it to someone who likes it better than me," Molloy said.

Another option was to make Marmite sandwiches for everyone during the Annual Appeal Week, which starts on June 1, or ask Sanitarium to break down the bucket into small jars to give away.

"It's a very large jar of Marmite, but we would never let anything like that go to waste, particularly when it has been so generously donated," she said.

 

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