Get us in your inbox

Heinz ketchup dispensers in Chicago
Photograph: Heinz

Why are giant ketchup dispensers all over Chicago?

Heinz declares war on the city's anti-ketchup crowd.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan

Chicagoans strolling down the streets today may have come face-to-face with giant ketchup dispensers right across some local restaurants. Lest you think this is a ploy to be a real-life April Fool's joke, think again: Heinz has actually set up the giant billboards as a commentary on the various eateries' ketchup-dispensing attitudes.

Some local businesses famously refuse to serve the condiment with their Chicago-style hot dogs so Heinz took it upon itself to offer eaters the chance to dowse their wieners with the company's tomatoey product. The dispensers will stay up for a week, through April 9, at locations including The Wieners Circle and Navy Pier.

According to Block Club Chicago, the billboard dispensers are activated when users "smack" the ketchup bottle that's attached to them. Expect little packets of the condiment to fall out following the slap. 

You can even nominate restaurants that don't serve ketchup to potentially receive one of the dispensers on the program's official website.

This isn't the first time that Heinz has waged war on Chicago's anti-ketchup voices. Back in 2017, the company famously launched the "Chicago Dog Sauce" on National Hot Dog Day. The creation was, well, ketchup—it looked, tasted and smelled the same as the original—albeit repackaged. 

"Some restaurants refuse to serve Heinz," reads a slide on the campaign video that Heinz has released in conjunction with its gimmick. "We have a solution."

The clip hilariously shows Chicagoans smacking their way to some ketchup, which they then generously pour on their hot dogs. 

Whether you find the entire shindig to blasphemy or have no opinion about it, one thing is for sure: the battle between Heinz and Chicago's anti-ketchup crowd is actually hilarious.

You may also like
You may also like