If there is one thing in the world of gastronomy that is uniquely Australian to an extreme, it is the food paste Vegemite. This by-product of beer production – made using yeast extract – has become very popular in Australia but is hard for people from other countries to get used to due to its very strong taste.
But this is not the only brand of yeast extract that is available in the world. In England, Unilever makes Marmite – a similar product but with some differences. Unsurprisingly, the ongoing Ashes series between Australia and England has also become a battleground for these two products.
In a move that was bound to be regarded as a masterstroke for publicity, Marmite decided to give away jars of their product free of cost at the first Ashes Test in Edgbaston. But Vegemite has decided to fight back in a very feisty manner to turn the tables on its competitors.
It put out a full-page advertisement in the English tabloid Daily Mirror in which it poked fun at its competitor using Australia's brilliant performance in the Edgbaston game. The text of the ad ran like this:
"News has reached down under that free jars of Marmite are being handed out at the Ashes to try to prove it tastes better than our Vegemite. Are you guys barmy? Of course the refined English palate will prefer yours. You see, Vegemite is a far stronger taste, made of resilience and fortitude with a dash of cunning and guile.
"Vegemite tastes like back to back tons on your return Test. Vegemite tastes like a come from behind victory by 251 runs. Catch ya (sic) at Lord's."
The references to Steve Smith's hundreds in each innings and the recovery of Australia from an apparently hopeless situation in the first innings was a very clever way of delivering a riposte. What's more, the company even put out tweets tagging everyone from Australia's Prime Minister to Shane Warne and asking them to show their support to the campaign.