There’s a new packaging concept for Fat Tomato Ketchup that comes in two varieties, red and yellow. The yellow version uses yellow tomatoes to pay homage to ketchup’s Asian origins, while the red is proud of its use of American tomatoes.
The packaging by Czech firm, MAISON D IDEE Prague, created fun characters with creative use of 3-D rendering, and… wait a minute… Is that a Native American tomato? Hold on a sec… Did they… Is that an Asian person as a yellow tomato? Wow, that went off the rails pretty quickly.
The designers, while explaining their use of the characters, provide such a genuine lesson in ketchup history and origin, that it’s hard to get angry at their obliviousness.
“We were delighted that we could connect the yellow packaging with a oriental character of the tomato. Finally at least something points to the origin of this beautiful westernized word ‘ketchup’. This word of a sauce made of fermented fish or mushroom paste (sources differ) was brought to Europe by sailors (most likely under Eastern Indian’s influence) from China on the turn of 18th century.”
Of course, this concept wouldn’t make it past a sketch pad in the U.S. What do you think? Cute, forgivably ill-advised, slightly racist, or all of the above?