While it may sound like an odd and insignificant title, the fact that Israel has banned Heinz ketchup should grab the attention of all ketchup consumers. Read about the details below to see if you should start opting for a new brand before dousing your fries, homemade burgers, and more with this condiment.
Heinz ketchup does not contain enough tomato solids, according to Israeli officials, and has thus been banned from the country. In early 2015, a company called Osem independently tested Heinz ketchup and found that on average, it only contained about 21% tomato concentrate. Although Osem is a rival ketchup company, the health ministry of Israel followed up on these claims and also found that Heinz ketchup does not contain enough tomato solids to be considered ketchup. The government now considers it a “seasoning” and will not even acknowledge it as a ketchup.
Although the study may be a little skewed due to the fact that it was conducted by a rival company, let’s take that 21% at face value and take a look at what makes up the other 79%. Distilled vinegar, high fructose corn syrup, tomato concentrate, corn syrup, and some seasoning (salt, onion powder, and other spices) make up the majority of what goes in a Heinz ketchup bottle.
You may be thinking, so what? None of these ingredients sound so bad. Unfortunately, some of these ingredients pose serious health risks, especially when consumed over a long period of time. Because high fructose corn syrup and corn syrup are essentially the same thing, these two ingredients combined actually make up a larger percentage than the 21% tomato concentrate, making corn syrup the primary ingredient in Heinz ketchup.
Corn syrup has been getting a lot of attention for not being as healthy as people once thought, and it’s believed that high fructose corn syrup can cause serious damage internally to our bodies. This syrup causes a huge spike in our body’s blood sugar levels, and can also cause damage to the liver. Even worse, this corn syrup is almost guaranteed to be from genetically modified corn. GMOs are suspected to cause a plethora of health conditions, from increased allergies to birth defects.
The third highest ingredient, distilled vinegar, is also made from genetically modified corn, which further increases your chances of damaging your body. The spices and natural flavorings that are listed at the end are mostly made up of salt, which increases your blood pressure and causes a multitude of health complications. Really, what comes out of the Heinz ketchup bottle is a bunch of corn in various forms with an exorbitant amount of salt.
Clearly, the Heinz ketchup you’ve been consuming is not as pure as once thought. Try opting for an organic option, or even making your own ketchup at home. That way, you know exactly where the ingredients come from and what actually went into that bottle.