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Marmite lovers who haven’t been able to buy larger jars of the spread during lockdown can blame the coronavirus.

Unilever, which owns the brand, says it has temporarily stopped producing all pack sizes other than its 250g jar, prompting a flurry of complaints on social media.

The firm blamed surging demand and a shortage of brewer’s yeast, a key ingredient.

But it said it had fixed the issues and normal supply would resume soon.

Fans of the spread, which is famous for dividing opinion, took to Twitter to vent their dismay at the shortage.

“I need Marmite like oxygen and really need more 400g squeezy jars. Can you advise on which retailers stock those at the moment? Thank you,” tweeted Tim Robey.

Another quipped: “I’ve just turned the news on to hear of a Marmite shortage – just when we thought 2020 couldn’t get any worse.”

Yeast by-product, generated when brewers make beer, is a key ingredient in Marmite. However, with pubs closed since March to battle the spread of Covid-19, there has been a shortage of late.

At the same time, Unilever said that more people preparing meals at home during lockdown had caused a surge in demand for the spread.

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