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Asked by Shanel Weimann
Ketchup
Condiments

What makes fancy ketchup so fancy?

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Kelli Prosacco
December 13, 2019 7:58PM

The “fancy” designation, which you’ve probably seen on Hunt's bottles or McDonald's ketchup packets over the years, actually used to be the USDA’s highest rating for ketchup. It has (somewhat mysteriously) fallen out of use recently, though; its current equivalent is U.S. Grade A ketchup.

Ketchup can get an A, B, or C grade. To get an A, ketchup has to be at least 33 percent solid and have good color, consistency, flavor, and finish, as well as earn at least 85 points on the USDA’s 100-point scoring system.

The USDA still uses “fancy” to describe the quality of some other foods (apples can even be extra fancy), but by today’s standards, “fancy ketchup” is as meaningless as it sounds.