Is Marmite vegan?
There are many benefits to becoming a Vegan. Vegan diets can help you lose a lot of weight without becoming malnourished, and the benefits of going vegan don’t end there. Vegan diets can also help you keep your heart healthy.
You’ll also be protected from Type 2 diabetes and certain forms of cancer. That said, the main drawback of going vegan is trying to figure out what you can eat. It’s not like every food item has a checkbox that says either vegan or non-vegan. One of the items in the gray area is Marmite, and today we’re going to determine whether or not Marmite is vegan.
What is Marmite?
Marmite is a food spread that originated in England. It’s made from yeast extract — which is a byproduct of brewing beer. Similar products include Vegemite from Australia, Cenovis from Switzerland, and Vitam-R from Germany.
Marmite is a dark brown food paste that’s rather sticky It comes with a very potent taste that is rather salty. The distinctive taste of Marmite is reflected in its marketing slogan “love it or hate it.” In fact, it’s so popular in British culture that the word Marmite has become a metaphor for something that’s considered an acquired taste.
Marmite is packed with B vitamins including riboflavin, thiamin, niacin, folic acid, and vitamin B12. The amount of sodium contained in the spread is rather high, which has caused some concern. That said, it’s more the volume of your servings that can affect your health rather than the sodium concentration per gram in the Marmite.
The main ingredient that Marmite is made of is yeast extract. It contains a high concentration of glutamic acid. Marmite is nearly gluten-free. That said, the parent company — Unilever — isn’t willing to confirm that it contains less than 20 ppm of gluten — the quota for gluten-free labeling and advertising.
Can vegans eat Marmite?
Seeing as yeast is a microfungus and not counted as an animal product, it’s as vegan-friendly as other mushrooms. Marmite is a brand name rather than the name of the actual substance — which is just yeast extract. Marmite is owned by Unilever — a company that’s now for animal testing — so if you want to avoid Unilever, you’ll need to avoid Marmite too.
That doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on its taste though, as you can find other yeast extract spreads on the market that isn’t produced by Marmite. For instance, you could buy the yeast extract that Meridian produces. Most vegans don’t mind eating microorganisms and yeast seeing as their concern lies with the suffering of sentient beings.
Yeast may be able to determine what temperature it is — similar to a plant — but when it comes to sentience, you’ll find that yeast is no more conscious than the average mushroom. In fact, yeast extract is important for most vegan diets since it’s a good source of vitamin B12.