Heinz ketchup faces shortage due to high demand at restaurants

The next COVID-19 related shortage is Ketchup.

The small individual packages restaurants give with pickup, takeout, and delivery orders are facing more shortage compared to the bottled variety.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the shortage is hitting America’s most popular brand, Heinz, with shortages at chains like Long John’s Silver and Texas Roadhouse.

Kraft Heinz confirmed to USA TODAY on Tuesday that it is adding new manufacturing lines that will boost production by about 25% for a total of more than 12 billion packets a year to increase supplies.

In a statement to USA TODAY, Steve Cornell, Kraft Heinz’s president of Enhancers, Specialty and Away from Home Business Unit said that the company “made strategic manufacturing investments at the start of the pandemic to keep up with the increase in demand for ketchup packets driven by the accelerated delivery and take-out trends.”

An additional reason for the shortage is restaurants also are using the packets when consumers are dining in. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for restaurants said that restaurants should avoid using or sharing items that are reusable, such as menus, condiments, and any other food containers and use disposable or digital menus, single-serving condiments, and no-touch trash cans and doors instead.

The cost of the packets is up 13% since January 2020, the Journal reported, pointing out the market share of packets grew at the expense of tabletop bottles, according to restaurant-business platform Plate IQ.