The Canadian ketchup wars are heating up again.
When Heinz decided to pull production of their ketchup from Canada three years ago, its rival French’s stepped in promising to buy tomatoes from Canadian farmers who were cut loose by Heinz and now French’s will start processing them here too.
French’s ketchup is going to be produced using tomatoes grown in the Leamington area and the ketchup will be made in the Select Food products plant in North York. The plant will churn out 250 bottles of ketchup a minute.
Back in 2014 Heinz closed its Leamington Ontario plant in favour of U.S. facilities, putting 740 Canadians out of work. At the time French’s stepped in and began buying its tomatoes from Leamington farmers and shipping them to its Ohio plant. Now with this North York production line, all of French’s ketchup sold in Canada will be made and bottled there.
“Part of our promise is sourcing locally and really manufacturing locally where we can, and then giving back to the community.”
While production of the ketchup won’t start for a little over a week, Select Food products is expected to make 10 million bottles of French’s ketchup by 2018. This multi-million dollar investment has already created 10 full-time jobs at the plant and saved numerous others on the farms.