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Australians using Vegemite to make moonshine

Communities across Australia have been brewing “bathtubs of moonshine” in their homes using yeast extract Vegemite, leading to what reports describe as a “prolific” problem.

News sites have reported instances of people buying up to twenty jars of the spread at a time

The problem has hit dry communities in Queensland and the Northern Territory hardest, with reported instances of people buying up to twenty jars of the spread at a time to make the bootleg alcohol.

The government is not looking to impose a ban on Vegemite, and instead will work towards prompting communities to take “greater responsibility” in reducing excessive sales of the product, according to Australian news sites.
There are a total of 19 communities in Queensland where alcohol is either limited or banned.

Indigenous affairs minister Nigel Scullion told the Sydney Morning Herald: “The government is not seeking to place any restrictions on Vegemite or any other yeast product that may be used in home brew in remote communities.

“Our priority has always been to get kids to school, make communities safer and get people into jobs. Businesses in these communities also have a responsibility to report any purchase that may raise their own suspicions.”

Vegemite was first produced in 1922 as an alternative to Marmite after World War I lead to a disruption of British imports, and is a food paste made from leftover brewers’ yeast extract with vegetable and spice additives.

Earlier this year, toxic bootleg alcohol killed more than 90 people and left a further 40 fighting for their lives in the Indian city of Mumbai.

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