Denmark denies ‘Marmite ban’

Gaby Leslie

Claims that British savoury spread Marmite was banned in Denmark yesterday have turned out to be false, according to the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries (DMFAF).

Several media publications reported on Tuesday that the yeast extract had been banned from the country because it is a fortified food with added vitamins and minerals.

However, Danish authorities have dismissed these claims.

Speaking with Yahoo! News, Jens Therkel Jensen from the DMFAF revealed that Unilever had never applied to sell their Marmite product in the country, something which has to be done in accordance with Danish law.

Therefore Marmite has not actually been banned - or approved - to be sold in the country because no application was made.

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According to Mr Jensen, Marmite was being sold illegally in Aalborg, a town known for selling British products. He stated that the Marmite products were not imported by Unilever, but by a small third party company.

Until the product is approved by the Danish food authorities, Marmite - rich in vitamin b12 and folic acid - cannot be marketed.

If Marmite was completely outlawed, it would join other blacklisted brands, such as all Kellogg’s cereals, chocolate malt Ovaltine and baby food Farley’s Rusks.

Danish food safety restrictions introduced in 2004 were made to protect customers from exceeding safe levels of nutrients in their diet.

A spokeswoman for Unilever said they were aware of Denmark’s statement, but had no more to add except that Danish fans could buy the brand from its UK website.

It is thought that Unilever is now considering filling an application for Marmite to be approved and sold legally.