Food News

Fact: Mayonnaise Is America's Condiment

When I was a kid and my parents took me to any restaurant with a ketchup pump I always felt the need to fill at least 17 of the paper cups. Even at a young age, I could grasp the basic tenets of economics, and the easiest way to maximize my utility at whatever burger chain I was at was to take them for all the ketchup I could manage to pack on my tray.

You probably had a similar experience (kids put that shit on everything), which is why many of us think that ketchup is the number one condiment consumed in America. To American kids, ketchup is made to inundate french fry boxes, make fish sticks swim and render every unknown and otherwise challenging food-thing completely innocuous. But ketchup is not the most consumed condiment in America -- mayonnaise is. And it turns out we're using a lot more of it.

Mayo sales have topped $2 billion per year here in the States, according to Euromonitor, a business strategy company that compiles consumer and sales data. Ketchup sales come in at less than half of that according to their study -- just $800 million. We're consuming mayonnaise at more than twice the rate as the ubiquitous, ruby red stuff.

The folks at Quartz charted the rest of the condiment data and turned up some other interesting fact. Sales for Texas' favorite yellow condiment come in at a paltry $450 million. That's less than soy sauce, barbecue sauce and hot sauce. What's worse is the mustard market has been shrinking since 2009. Texans may love squirting mustard on their hamburger patties, but clearly that love isn't enough.

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Scott Reitz
Contact: Scott Reitz