November 1, 2002

Ketchup Packets

Category: Environment

YOUR LOCAL DIVE: Curse these vile things. You need 16 packets to get a reasonable amount of ketchup, and your fingers always become annoyingly soiled, along with the table. Additionally, they represent one of the most wasteful uses of non-recyclable packaging material I can imagine. I'm curious to know exactly how much aluminum and plastic goes into each packet, and how it compares to the volume of ketchup dispensed by a full sized bottle.

In our society of convenience, I can understand the motivation for the use of these things, but for 'eat-in' customers at a restaurant, how difficult is it to provide those 'pump-action' ketchup dispensers' with the little paper cups? Or for non-fast-food restaurants, real bottles on the table? I imagine it's cheaper too, cutting down on both ketchup-supply costs, and trash disposal costs. That goes double for pubs and non-chain restaurants that ought to know better. I'd gladly pay a few cents extra for my ketchup to make it happen.

Photo swiped from the Clearfour Condiment Museum.

Posted by Nick at November 1, 2002 12:20 PM


Ah yes, here's part of the answer: 50 Ketchup pacets equal one 14 ounce plastic bottle.

Posted by: Nick at November 1, 2002 12:43 PM

How do the Ketchup companies package ketchup into those little packets without making it look like it was pre-opened?

Posted by: Dafna at August 14, 2003 10:54 PM

I LOVE KETCHUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous at January 15, 2004 8:50 PM

Everyone likes to keep lots of these packets in their drawers. I wonder what the shelflife (or drawerlife) of these packets are. Do they stay fresh forever like people think?

Posted by: Joe at February 13, 2004 4:27 AM

Need help, With finding a local condiment packet manufactor in the Toronto Ontario area..

Any help,
would be greatly appreciated.

Posted by: roy at February 27, 2004 12:59 AM

Ketchup packets are so rad! I don't know why everyone likes to complain about them. They rock, and i'm collecting ketchup packets mostly, but also relish and mustard and such (GREY PUPON)! Yes, indeed ketchup packets are so totally awesome.

Posted by: Janelle Killam at June 11, 2004 12:12 PM