Providing British and American food products to nostalgic internationals weary of poor Danish alternatives has never made anyone rich.
Abigail’s is still soldiering on as an online business after giving up its physical store in the centre of Copenhagen half a decade ago, and now Randers-based wholesaler Food From Home, the main supplier of international foodstuffs to the country’s supermarkets for the last 18 years, has been declared bankrupt.
All of this means you’d better get your skates on and pillage the remaining items in those special Union Jack/Old Glory-marked sections. Soon they may disappear altogether.
“The dream has come to an end”
Food From Home owner Dave Darlington – who became a hero in the eyes of many British consumers in 2014 when he paid out of his own pocket for Marmite to be recognised as a legal food – had no choice but to pull the plug, he confirmed on his LinkedIn page.
Darlington, who also heads Uncle Joe’s American Kitchen, blamed a third party for leaving him 1.9 million kroner out of pocket – a debt racked up by a service provider he had “put his trust in” back in early 2017 who he is “unable to sue” as “the law is on their side”.
“After working my backside off for many years, the dream has come to an end – Food From Home is now out of business and bankrupt,” he said.
“The results are of course disastrous. Because of somebody else’s negligence, I end up losing my business – and very likely my home too.”
In August 2014, Darlington wrote his name into Danish expat folklore when the Fødevarestyrelsen food authority approved the risk assessment application he had submitted for Marmite earlier that year.
The approval ended several years of Marmite woe for Brits and many other internationals in Denmark after Fødevarestyrelsen ruled in 2011 that the savoury spread could no longer be marketed in Denmark because it contained the added vitamin B12.
“I feel like it’s a victory. The Vikings have been defeated at last in the battle of Marmite,” Darlington told CPH POST back then.
“It’s a victory that the British people should have because there are those who can’t live without Marmite. It’s a victory for the consumer; the decision to ban Marmite or not to allow it to be sold was very wrong.”