27 June 2005
I don't like the plastic. It feels cheap.
I've rarely tried other brands of mayonnaise when my grocer's shelves were devoid of Hellmann's. Most often, I'll drive to another store to find Hellmann's. If, however, I have chosen to substitute, (for the record there is no substitute), I either look forward to running out of whatever brand I've "substituted" quickly or I throw it out as soon as I have finished my potato or tuna salad so I can replace it with Hellmann's. Four generations of my family have preferred Hellmann's. It's as close to homemade as it gets. I don't mind paying a premium for it because it's the best, and it comes in glass jars.
Oh, wait. Best Foods has begun to stock my grocer's shelves with Hellmann's in plastic jars. I purchased my first jar of Hellmann's in plastic while at Costco a couple of weeks ago. At first, surprise. Then repulsion. The plastic feels cheap and nasty -- a lot like the way I feel about Kraft mayonnaise. Or Miracle Whip (unless I am making cole slaw).
Plastic sucks. It cheapens whatever it contains. The glass containers add value. Glass containers say "we cherish our product, our brand. It's important to us to put it in the best container."
Take Coca-Cola for instance. Or, Pepsi, 7-up, Mountain Dew, Dr Pepper. They all taste better out of glass. Brown plastic beer bottles? Stupid. Plastic squeeze bottles of Heinz ketchup? Come on. Heinz gave up a big part of their brand when they did away with the small glass bottle with the "57" on it. In a diner once, while the voice of Carly Simon sang in my head as I waited for ketchup to grace my plate, a cheerful experienced waitress told me, "tap the 57". It worked, and ever since then when I want ketchup, I tap the "57". But, the only way that piece of pop culture stays with me is because I refill my glass ketchup bottle like I learned to when I was waiting tables.
Oh, sure. We can argue that plastic is unbreakable. That's why it's perfect for shampoo. Or, bleach. Food and beverages belong in glass bottles and jars.