Are you a ketchup lover? If so, then let me be the one to break the bad news to you: your taste in condiments sucks.
In the past 30 years, nearly every other condiment has evolved, improved and diversified. But not ketchup. That’s why ketchup is the single most overrated condiment in America. As other condiments progress towards the future, ketchup is stuck in the past.
But let’s not just hate on ketchup, lets hate on the people who love ketchup.
Ketchup sucks because you, and you, and YOU put ketchup on your pasta and your eggs and your mashed potatoes. You slather everything on your plate with ketchup, perfectly content to eat the same exact substance your great-great-grandfather did.
In an article called The Ketchup Conundrum by Malcolm Gladwell, Gladwell explains how in the 70′s and 80′s, mustard, tomato sauce, and thousands of other American food products underwent a drastic transformation, providing wider choice and variety to consumers. No longer were we forced to eat only yellow mustard or only one kind of tomato sauce.
Today you can buy dozens of premium mustards – dijon mustard, honey mustard, horseradish mustard, spicy mustard, raspberry mustard…the list goes on and on. This is because people who are mustard lovers appreciate good taste, and they appreciate taste variety. For this reason, mustard lovers have embraced the improvement and diversification of their condiment.
But ketchup didn’t follow the pattern other condiments did. When you walk into the store, are there 15 different delicious ketchups for you to choose from? No, there is Hunt’s, Heinz and a store brand. No matter which you buy, it’s the same exact substance people were eating during the Hoover administration.
Ketchup lovers are stubborn, naive and have a terrible palate. So they don’t demand a better ketchup. Thinking that ketchup is fine how it’s always been is like thinking that your Commodore 64 is as good as my Playstation 2. It’s not. It sucks ass, no matter how many times you’ve set the high score in Oregon Trail.
So I say to ketchup lovers: Why would you not want to buy a more delicious or unique ketchup? Why not a premium, high-end ketchup? Garlic ketchup or spicy ketchup? A sweeter or a richer, fuller ketchup? Premium, high-end ketchups exist, but they continue to fail because ketchup lovers shut them out. Every other condiment in the world is getting better and more diverse, but not ketchup. It’s staying the same because you are too stupid to know you could be eating something better.
So consider this a call to action for all casual eaters of ketchup out there. I’m talking to those of us who think ketchup is mediocre, but squirt it on our fries because we don’t have anything better available. Every time you see someone lathering up their eggs with ketchup, spreading ketchup on their turkey sandwich or squirting a heaping mound on a slice of pizza, explain to them that they are the problem, and they need to be part of the solution.
If we all work together, we can reach a point where there are dozens of high-end ketchups in the grocery store for us to choose from. And you know who else will appreciate that? Ketchup lovers. Because right now, they’re too stupid to know what’s good for them.