Green Room

Say It Ain’t So: Heinz Ketchup the Latest Casualty of Liberal Political Doctrine

posted at 8:02 pm on May 14, 2010 by

Thanks to pressure from Michael Bloomberg, Heinz is changing its recipe for its famous ketchup.

Now you see it. Soon you won’t. Take a good look at the picture at the left. By the time the H. J. Heinz Company is finished remaking its world-famous ketchup to comply with Michael Bloomberg’s National Salt Reduction Initiative, you may not recognize the product.

As reported last month, Heinz is one of 16 national food manufacturers and food service vendors that has knuckled under to pressure from the New York City mayor to reduce the salt content in their products by 25 percent.

Heinz Ketchup is more than a condiment. It’s an icon. Despite assurances from spokerspersons at the Pittsburgh-based company that the new recipe will be as popular as the original, some things are not meant to be tampered with. I suspect many Americans share my fear that when all is said and done, Heinz will have converted its much-beloved ketchup to just another catsup.

And to what end? To satisfy the misguided ravings of yet another well-intentioned political gasbag who has decreed that you lack the wherewithal to make decisions regarding your personal health and that government should therefore step in as your surrogate.

Bloomberg’s self-anointment as New York’s health guru is part of a national craze among mayors and governors. In many localities, the efforts are taking the form of taxes, on soft drinks, for example, to shore up ailing economies under the guise of looking out for the well-being of constituents.

Even if one accepts the premise that restricting sodium helps people live longer, shouldn’t it be up to the individual to decide if he wants to make that change to his diet? If Michael Bloomberg chooses to eat to live, it is not government’s role or responsibility to sit in judgment of his decision. The same holds true, however, of people who choose to live to eat.

As for Heinz Ketchup, company spokeswoman Jessica Jackson told the New York Post that the new recipe has been tested across “a broad cross-section of consumers.” She added that Heinz is not worried that the new ketchup recipe will suffer the same fate as New Coke, which was resoundingly rejected by consumers when it was unveiled in 1985. I suppose we’ll see soon enough whether that optimism is justified.

According to Heinz’s website, over 650 million bottles of Heinz Ketchup are sold around the world in more than 140 countries, with annual sales of more than $1.5 billion.

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“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised
for the good of its victims may be the most
oppressive. It may be better to live under robber
barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The
robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his
cupidity may at some point be satiated; but
those who torment us for our own good, will torment
us without end, for they do so with the approval
of their own conscience.” ~ C.S. Lewis

Duncan Khuver on May 14, 2010 at 8:38 PM

Sorry but this is a dumb thread. No one cares what happens to the liberal company Heinz, most hope it goes under. The post should of been how the liberal heniz is pushing their own agenda, not Bloombergs, they are all for pushing their agenda on us. Seriously, this thread is a waste.

WoosterOh on May 14, 2010 at 10:07 PM

I’ll just add a pinch of salt there and there myself and that includes ketchup if need be. I have no intention of changing my dietary habits to suit Michelle Obama. They can just be worked around and hopefully, these two will be gone and sanity might return.

jeanie on May 14, 2010 at 10:28 PM

I cannot stand ketchup. mayonnaise and BBQ sauces are good, ketchup has almost 0 flavor for me.

astonerii on May 14, 2010 at 10:29 PM

No one cares what happens to the liberal company Heinz, most hope it goes under.

Did somebody miss the point of the post altogether?

Or do we only care when government harasses companies we like?

I recommend actually reading the post before commenting, for instance:

“…Heinz is one of 16 national food manufacturers and food service vendors that has knuckled under to pressure from the New York City mayor….”

IndieDogg on May 15, 2010 at 12:56 AM

They’re knucklin’ under because they’ve seen what happens to folks who don’t go along with the Obama Thugocracy’s plans. I don’t think they wanted to be threatened and told the gummint will call out the rabid hordes of Miracle Whip commandos to put the squeeze on their business.

Seriously, though, it’s a little frightening that instead of choosing to deal with hard core, life-or-death issues facing this country both at home and abroad, the Chicago Thugs have picked yet another aspect of American life to “change.”

I’d ask what’s next, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know. But know this, the first person to try and take my favorite foods out of my hands may well get hurt. There’s a rule I’ve always lived by and warned others to as well: Never get between a fat chick and her yummies. Though I now have to get up on a stepladder to do it, I have no problem with kickin’ an offender’s cojones hard enough to lodge ‘em in their nostrils. And believe me when I say, puttin’ hands on my snacks without askin’ most definitely counts as offensive to this big, but not sideshow big, gal. :)

Besides, look how much soylent green could be made from my crippled bod once the death panels kick in! *snicker*

Mad Mad Monica on May 15, 2010 at 2:25 AM

We stopped buying Kerry crap ketchup long ago.

tarpon on May 15, 2010 at 5:01 AM

If only they had said to New York- stop this craziness or we’ll stop shipping to your city. I’m sure there might be quite a few people who buy their products that would have had something to say about that.

Exit question- if they sell so much to so many around the world, why let the New York City mayor dictate their ingredients? Why does a Pittsburgh based company feel the need to let NYC tell them what they can and can’t put in their ketchup?

Jay Mac on May 15, 2010 at 6:01 AM

A 120 lb. human body has about 7 tablespoons of salt in it at a naturally balanced level. Will the next step be to reduce that?

Also, what about someone who engages in some form of physical workout such as roofing a house, playing basketball or other? Perspiring salty water, the human body craves to get it back into balance. So, do Gatorade and such drinks have the same requirement to reduce salt content? Is it fair legal practice not to require it? Think discrimination.

At least tell me that it’s o.k. for hospitals to administer sodium chloride laced IVs to emergency room patients that have lost blood volume in an accident.

Or has this latest “fad” already permeated every neuron in government?

Robert17 on May 15, 2010 at 9:18 AM

“…Heinz is one of 16 national food manufacturers and food service vendors that has knuckled under to pressure from the New York City mayor….”

IndieDogg on May 15, 2010 at 12:56 AM

Heinz “knuckled under”? Not, they are bad for America are were glad to help push the agenda.

Heinz Foundation, Ford Foundation, Tides, know some background before you speak.

WoosterOh on May 15, 2010 at 9:22 AM

Yes, I am ignoring the main princible of the thread, but my point is, Heinz is part of the problem and more than glad to help push the salt agenda.

The article could of been about companies that are helping push the lefts agenda. If a left company like Heinz would of put up a fight, that would of been news.

WoosterOh on May 15, 2010 at 9:26 AM

We stopped buying Kerry crap ketchup long ago.

tarpon on May 15, 2010 at 5:01 AM

Me too, I don’t allow any of kerry’s products in my house. Didn’t hurt that my brother worked for a competitor!

Mini-14 on May 15, 2010 at 9:28 AM

Mr. Portnoy, you’ve done the impossible…you’ve discovered one, single aspect of our society that might actually have been better off had John Kerry won in ’04.

It’s only one, but that’s more than I’d have ever conceived of.

Cylor on May 15, 2010 at 9:42 AM

Are New Yorkers that stupid to keep electing the guy? Or are they just fanatical about nanny staters? I find it crazy that Heinz would go along with tampering of the greatest ketchup ever. I suppose they figure it is coming regardless with Obama’s policies.

Southernblogger on May 15, 2010 at 12:10 PM

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Allahpundit on May 15, 2010 at 5:16 PM