U.S. food conglomerate Kraft Heinz Co. closed its Ontario processing facility in 2014. After six years of inactivity, the company announced Tuesday ketchup would be back in Canada next summer. Heinz reported it would produce 45 million kilograms of ketchup every year at a Montreal facility. The ingredients for the Canadian-made ketchup will come from the United States to start, but the company hopes to move to a Canadian supply chain in the future.
Heinz ketchup was used to be made at a processing facility in Leamington, Ont., southeast of Windsor. Its closure resulted in a consumer boycott of the iconic product and created an unexpected boom for rival French. According to the company, reopening will cost them about $17 million, part of which is financed by a $2 million forgivable loan from the government of Quebec’s business expansion program.
Coming back to ketchup is good news to Canadians because it will create about 30 jobs at Montreal’s Mont-Royal facility. UnMarketing CEO Scott Stratten said in a statement, ‘people think Canadians are passive or pushovers, but Canadians are very loyal versus patriotic.… We are just not all caps yelling about it until something happens.”That miscalculation cost Kraft Heinz.”It was a massive boost for French’s,” he said. “It’s tough to get that boost back when you’ve given it to another brand.
Additionally, Stratten said the company’s decision to leave Leamington in the first place was a misstep, as it inadvertently tapped into Canadians’ dormant sense of patriotism. He said their main objective would be their consumers’ feedback about the product, which has been out of the market for a long time.