The spreads category on supermarket shelves has seen the disappearance of a leading yeast extract and a fish paste spread.
The choices now available for sandwich spreads are mainly peanut butter, jam, chocolate and a limited range of sandwich spreads.
With no real reasons given for the withdrawal of the yeast extract and fish paste spreads, it is difficult to fathom the underlying reasons.
Could this be an opportunity for the small business person or home industries to come up with alternative spreads?
A small but growing category in the home industries area is relishes that can also be used on sandwiches.
Pates such as biltong and other meat spreads have been introduced but they remain small perhaps because of the high cost of ingredients.
Cold meats are another area that is growing, as one has witnessed at Saturday morning markets. Some high-quality meat products are now being produced by small-scale specialist craft producers.
The cost of imported spreads is ever rising, and though limited quantities are available in specialist grocery stores, imported products are unable to match locally produced products in price. For example, a tuna spread from Portugal has been discontinued in the smaller grocery outlets because it is no longer economical to import it.
Those who enjoy toast for breakfast may welcome a delicious locally produced spread that has a far reduced carbon footprint than spreads from large centralised factories or faraway countries.