There’s a wrong way to eat a hot dog, says the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council.
hot dog, Americans are expected to eat an estimated 150 million hot dogs on July 4th — and according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, many of those Americans will be doing it wrong.
The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council (NHDSC), a trade association founded in 1994 by the North American Meat Institute (NAMI), has long celebrated hot dogs and condiments of all kinds. But the top one in NHDSC can’t bear it and the council is making its feelings known ahead of Independence Day.
NHDSC President Eric Mittenthal said in a 2021 press release, “Any hot dog is delicious, no matter how you lead. “Well, except [hot dogs] with ketchup. The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council etiquette guide says only children should eat their hot dogs with ketchup.
Mittenthal’s comments about ketchup reflect a long-held belief among members of the NHDSC as well. In a 2008 video produced by the organization, a spokesperson claimed that using ketchup on hot dogs was a violation of the “prime rule” of sausage etiquette.
“Never, ever put ketchup on a hot dog after the age of 18,” an NHDSC spokesperson says in the video. “We all want to grow up sometime.” (Most Americans didn’t; a 2021 NHDSC survey of 1,000 people found that 61% enjoyed their hot dogs with ketchup from time to time.)
Acceptable toppings, on the other hand, include “mustard, relish, onions, cheese and chili,” according to the council’s online etiquette guide. The NHDSC has also previously supported other types of toppings found on Chicago-style dogs (sports peppers, tomatoes, celery salt, pickle spears, etc.).