The ‘Happy Little VEGEMITEs’ jingle is aired on radio and captures the essence of the time and promotes the idea of a healthy, ‘lucky country’ where living standards are rising rapidly.
‘Pure Yeast Extract’ is changed to ‘Concentrated Yeast Extract’ on the VEGEMITE label, at the request of the company’s production department, who feels it is a more precise description. This description remains unchanged and is still used on labels today.
Kraft had to ration VEGEMITE on a per capita basis to the general Australian population during this time, in order to meet the demand.
As sales of VEGEMITE are sluggish, The Pure Vegetable Extract is renamed to ‘Parwill’ to emulate the success of the English spread, ‘Marmite’ that dominates the Australian market.
It is branded with the catchphrase, “If Ma-mite…then Pa-will.”
Parwill is only ever sold in Queensland and it fails to gain momentum. It would take Fred Walker a couple of years of perseverance and a change back to VEGEMITE for Australians to embrace the brand.
The Fred Walker Company merges with J.L Kraft Inc. To become Kraft Walker Cheese Company Pty Ltd.
In February 1923, Fred Walker from the Fred Walker Company, hired a young chemist named Dr. Cyril P Callister to develop a remarkable new spread from brewer’s yeast.
In spring, the formulation was confirmed – its appealing taste, backed up by its credentials as being one of the world’s richest known sources of natural Vitamin B – marks the start of what will become one of Australia’s most loved products for generations to come.
Fred Walker ran a competition, inviting the Australian public to create a name for the new product. A prize of 50 pounds – a sizeable sum for that era – is placed into a prize pool for finalists. The winning entrant of the competition is lost in the mists of time except for one thing, the name that was selected: VEGEMITE
VEGEMITE was sold in a two ounce (57g) amber glass jar, capped with what was known as a Phoenix seal, to keep the contents fresh and described as ‘Pure Vegetable Extract’ – delicious on sandwiches and toast, and as improving the flavour of soups, stews and gravies.