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Sunday, 24 March 2013

Bovril

Bovril is the trade name of a concentrated extract of beef, the basis for a hot drink but also used as a flavouring or for gravy.

The beefy drink was invented in 1873 by John Lawson Johnston, who was producing tinned beef in Canada for the French military. It was originally known as Johnston’s Fluid Beef.'

Johnston was a Scot who had studied with a view to entering the medical profession but who instead turned his attention to dietetics.

Johnson launched it in Britain in the 1880s under a new name based on the Latin for a cow (bos, bovis) plus the word vril – a magic force (described as the 'unity in natural energic agencies') which had featured in Edward Bulwer-Lytton's 1871 sci-fi novel The Coming Race. A very successful advertising campaign later recommended Bovril to avoid 'that sinking feeling.'

By 1888, over 3,000 British public houses, grocers and chemists were selling Bovril. In 1889, the Bovril Company was formed.

Bovril holds the unusual position of having been advertised with Papal approval. An advertising campaign of the early 20th Century in Britain depicted the Pope seated on his throne, bearing a mug of Bovril. The campaign slogan ran: "The Two Infallible Powers - The Pope & Bovril".


In 1902 Captain Robert Scott went on an expedition to the Antarctic and on Christmas Day his colleague, Ernest Shackleton, brewed up a big tub of Bovril for Scott’s team.


In 1971, Cavenham Foods acquired the Bovril Company but then sold most of its dairies and South American operations to finance further take-overs. The brand is now owned by Unilever.

Bovril can be made into a drink by diluting with hot water, or less commonly with milk.  It can also be used as a flavouring for soups, stews or porridge, or spread on bread, especially toast, rather like Marmite.

Bovril holds the unusual position of having been advertised with a Pope. An advertising campaign of the early 20th century in Britain depicted Pope Leo XIII seated on his throne, bearing a mug of Bovril. The campaign slogan read: The Two Infallible Powers - The Pope & Bovril.

Sources WikipediaHistory World

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