Ketchup Packet Shortage

Michael Jannicelli, Staff Writer

After all we’ve gone through during this pandemic and all the shortages that it brought with it, we never imagined that ketchup packets would be an issue. This all started when the CDC recommended people get delivery and take out instead of dining in, and what comes with your order? Yes, ketchup packets. When restaurants started reopening, in order to keep things safe some restaurants got rid of the ketchup bottles and replaced them with packets. Heinz, the biggest ketchup producer in the US announced a 25% increase in ketchup packet production, which equals 12 billion ketchup packets a year.  With the increased demand, the cost of the packets naturally followed suit. Steve Cornell, president of Kraft Heinz enhancers said, “We made strategic manufacturing investments at the start of the pandemic to keep up with the surge in demand for ketchup packets.” Some people are now even selling the packets online. One restaurant owner told CNN, “It’s gotten so bad that when I go to Wendy’s or McDonalds I’ll hoard those packets to bring back to Blake Street.”  So next time you order take out and get a few ketchup packets, guard them with your life for they are worth their weight in gold!