Ketchup is the New Shortage Thanks to the Pandemic
Since the pandemic we've seen all types of shortages from toilet paper to cleaning products and even coins. Now, it's ketchup. Not just any ketchup but THE ketchup... Heinz.
USA Today reports that the company can't keep up with the demand so Kraft Heinz will soon be opening more manufacturing facilities to increase production by 25%. With the majority of people forced to stay home over the last year, it makes sense that they are buying and eating ketchup more. However, the shortage isn't in the bottles; it's specifically affected packets.
The cost of ketchup packets has gone up 13% since last January and it's for two reasons:
- People are getting it with their takeout and delivery
- The CDC's recommendation is that restaurants don't have ketchup bottles, salt and pepper shakers, menus, etc. at the table and instead use packets or single-serve items. This is to avoid the use of sharing and therefore spreading germs.
This has resulted in restaurants running low with their stock and Heinz trying to accommodate but struggling to keep up.
With extra production, Heinz is upping their ketchup packets to 12 billion per year, worldwide. According to their website, the company is currently selling 11 billion packets per year.
To some, a ketchup shortage may not seem as big of a deal as toilet paper, but there's a chance that you or someone you know feel otherwise. A recent study based on Google searches, found that ketchup was named America's favorite sauce. 24 states mentioned it more than any other sauce. Most were in the Midwest, including Michigan. Side note, is ketchup even a sauce?!
On the bright side, you should still be able to find a bottle of your favorite ketchup at the store.