Charles Cilliers
Journalist
2 minute read
21 May 2021
11:32 am

What exactly is ‘uniquely Australian British sausage boerewors’?

Charles Cilliers

The only thing more mixed than the marketing of this particular product is probably whatever is actually inside it.

Uniquely British Australian boerewors. Picture: Twitter/@Kairofthedark

Twitter was left both amused and bemused earlier this week by a photo of a pack of “boerewors” being sold in an Australian supermarket.

Despite boerewors being seen as a product that’s about as South African as biltong and rooibos, it was labelled as produced by The British Sausage Company, which is apparently (and very confusingly) “Uniquely Australian”.

In the tweet, which was retweeted by among others the DA’s federal leader Helen Zille, the product was described as “cultural appropriation twice over”.

One person responded that his great-grandmother would be spinning in her grave but also laughing at the thought of this. She had been in a concentration camp during the South African war as a child, yet her first husband had been English.

Twitter user Daniella Argento pointed out that South Africans should remember: “Cumberland sausage predates boerewors and may well be an antecedent of the South African variety. It is certainly very similar. Then again an intestine filled with chopped meat is hardly an original culinary concept.”

Another user joked that she could see another “Anglo Boer War loading” over this.

Others pointed out that there are enough South Africans who’ve emigrated to Australia by now that it’s inevitable their supermarket products will start to be South Africanised. In 2018, it was estimated that as many as 200,000 of them had moved to the country, colloquially referred to as “packing for Perth”.

At the current exchange rate, Australia’s boerewors would cost you around R120 per kilogram, which is about the same price as premium-quality boerewors in South Africa.