Have you ever gotten French fries for the road only to find that dipping and eating on-the-go is extremely difficult? Well, those days of trying to squeeze packets of ketchup over your fries may be over.
After 40 years of the same design Heinz redesigned the ketchup packets you get at fast food in 2010. The new ‘Dip & Squeeze’ ketchup packet is shaped like a shallow cup. The top can be peeled back for dipping – or the end can be torn off for the more traditional squeezing. It’s the end to tearing packets open with your teeth, spilling ketchup down your front, and being unable to eat fries in your car. Heinz, which sells more than 11 million ketchup packets a year, will continue to sell its traditional foil packets as well.
This redesign comes after researchers at Heinz determined that since many of their customers used ketchup in the car, squeezable packets were inconvenient. Heinz designers found that drivers wanted something they could place on the arm rest so they could dunk and drive without getting ketchup all over their clothes.
Penske Automotive Group didn’t realize this was such a big problem. However apparently a redesign was necessary because out of a recent survey of 1000 people over 70 percent they eat and drive and 83 percent drink non-alcoholic beverages while driving. This is amazing considering in 2006 NHTSA studies showed that 80 percent of car accidents and 65 percent of near-accidents are caused by drivers who are distracted, which includes eating or drinking on the road.
Remember eating and driving does take your attention away from road safety. Please be safe. Dunking French fries into ketchup not only forces you to take one hand off of the steering wheel and your eyes off of the road, thinking about getting the perfect fry to ketchup ratio can also be distracting and increase your risk for an accident.
So before you start dipping, you may want to think twice before you bring your French fries to-go in the car. While those piping hot fries and ketchup may be immediately satisfying, they are not worth a potentially devastating car accident.
Here are other foods to avoid while on the road:
1. Hot beverages – while hot coffee or tea may be a great way to start your morning, hot beverages can spill and burn your skin and stain your clothes if you drive over a road bump.
2. Tacos and burritos – these can disassemble easily and turn your car into a salad bar.
3. Wings – messy and sticky, wings can require both hands and lots of napkins which will increase your risk for a car accident.