One of our most iconic brands is back in Aussie hands

  Remember a few years ago when Vegemite was bought by an American company? It was news that outraged many
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Remember a few years ago when Vegemite was bought by an American company?

It was news that outraged many in Australia, and prompted some to boycott Vegemite and other Australian products that had made their way into foreign ownership.

But now there is some good news, and it’ll make you a happy little Vegemite!

Vegemite has become Australian-owned again, with dairy company Bega Cheese buying Aussie and New Zealand products owned by US company Mondelez International.

You might remember that Mondelez took control of Kraft, Vegemite’s longtime owner in 2012.

Bega chairman Barry Irvin was quoted inThe Australian as describing the deal as a “rare opportunity” to buy the brand.

“Vegemite does not often change hands and, in fact, it hasn’t really changed hands for 90 years,” he said.

“This is a food manufacturing company with an iconic brand in Vegemite and great opportunities in the future.

“We see it as a great fit and a great next step for Bega Cheese.”

But it’s not only Vegemite included in the $460 million deal.

Kraft-branded products including peanut butter, cheese slices, cheese spread, mayonnaise, parmesan cheese and mac & cheese are also being bought by Bega.

The news that Vegemite is back in Australian hands has many celebrating!

Iconic Aussie entrepreneur Dick Smith, who has attempted to buy the Vegemite brand many times over the years, welcomed the news.

He told AAP that he would have been willing to pay even more than what Bega Cheese had for Vegemite.

“You would have thought they would want to get a good price on it but they obviously haven’t bothered,” he said.

“We would have paid more for it because there are millions of Australians who would invest in a Vegemite company – every mum and dad, everyone would.”

As you would be aware, Smith owns his own version of Vegemite – OzEmite.

And even though Vegemite is back in Aussie hands, OzEmite will continue to be sold – with Smith raising the possibility of selling OzEmite to Bega Cheese.

“We have a tremendous amount of loyal people who want gluten free and we designed OzEmite to be gluten free, so I don’t think we could get rid of it,” he told AAP.

“I have no interest in making any money from it or running another business but if it is back in Australian hands I am delighted,” he said.

In a time when we’re hearing about and talking about foreign ownership, this is some welcome news!

What do you think? Are you happy to see Vegemite back in Australian hands?

  1. Guy Flavell  

    Wonderful news. Now dump the “Halal Free” bulldust and get the traditional Vegemite flavour back.

    • lockers  

      The Halal certificate has nothing to do with the taste … it was a reduction in the salt content that changed the taste from the orginal formula. Irrespective … Australia hasn’t owned vegemite since the 1930’s. Kraft Foods is an American company and was bought out by another American company. I worked for them back in the 80’s so my info is quite accurate. Nice to see vegemite as an Australian product again.

  2. Wayne Watkins  

    Yup , since being diagnosed a coeliac , I eat Ozymite coz its gluten free , but Coles & Woolies hide it , either on the top or bottom shelves

  3. Mavis  

    Yes, great to see it back in Australian hands. Bega Cheese you are heroes.

    • Jim  

      Isn’t Bega NZ owned, Fonterra , so Vegemite is now Kiwi owned?

  4. David lempriere  

    Has vegemite ever been owned by Australia ?

  5. Truth 13  

    Does it make any difference ? American owners sold it with profit, only to expand their business in US, with the hope of better times, under the Donald Trump. Since he won the election, the share price & the stock-market went up, but if “Tota” Trump fail to fulfill his promises (which is very likely), everything will come crashing down. The world will see it in less than six months. One thing is already sure, Mexico will NEVER pay for his wall. Trump will realise very soon, only the illegal Mexicans will work in the farms for about $5.00 and hour, and not the Blacks or the off White Americans, who sit on their asses and get social security benefits, without working.

  6. Pamela  

    At Bega Cheese a fee is charged by the halal accreditation body to cover an inspection of the factory’s premises and the issuing of a certification. This Islamic tax is known as zakat and funds terrorism!

  7. Diane Burns  

    Who would buy Bega? it’s Halal! Wouldn’t look at the brand.

  8. Julian de Meyrick  

    No I don’t remember when Vegemite was bought by the American-owned Kraft company in about 1935 when they absorbed the Fred Walker Company, the inventors and makers of Vegemite. I wasn’t born for another 15 years.

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