Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cultural icons: Australians and our Vegemite spread

Ah, Vegemite. I've mentioned Vegemite before, here and here, but this is the first time I've devoted an entire post to this quintessential Australian spread. This sticky black stuff (which is definitely not sweet, contrary to the expectations of many foreigners) is an Aussie favourite spread on toast at breakfast time and anyone who travels to Australia and gets to interact with the locals will most likely be forced to taste it at some time.

And I should warn you, if you did not grow up eating Vegemite, you'll probably think it tastes disgusting. Sorry about that, but we think it's marvellous.

Vegemite has reached the headlines again, not because of its disastrous iSnack 2.0 product (it's a long story) but because Kraft (who sadly now own Vegemite - sadly because they're not Australian) have decided that the best way to sell more Vegemite is to go back 50 years in time and use the TV advertising that sold the spread way back then.

The ad, with the famous-amongst-Aussies jingle "We're happy little Vegemites", is a classic part of Australian culture, so do check it out. I think you can't really understand an Australian until you understand that he or she loves eating this weird black stuff on their toast.

[Pic courtesy of AZAdam via Flickr CC]

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