Marmite is the brand name for two similar food spreads: the original British version, since 2000 a Unileverproduct; and a modified version produced in New Zealand by Sanitarium Health Food Company and distributed in Australia and the Pacific. Marmite is made from yeast extract, a by-product of beer brewing. Other similar products include the Australian Vegemite, which is saltier in taste, the Swiss Cenovis and the German Vitam-R.
The British version of the product is a sticky, dark brown food paste with a distinctive, powerful flavour, which is extremely salty. This distinctive taste is reflected in the British company’s marketing slogan: “Love it or hate it.” The product’s name has entered British English as a simile for something that is an acquired taste or tends to polarise opinions.