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I am the first to admit I am a bit of a control freak when it comes to food shopping. I get furious when I discover the latest brand has repackaged their product in the hope that we won’t notice that they’ve given us less for the same price (Heinz soup being the last one I noticed) and I can usually be found in the supermarket swapping over things that the family have thrown in the trolley without any economic forethought with cheaper alternatives/offers in a bid to combat such corporate ploys.
And there had been one glaring error that I had spotted.
The Hellman’s mayonnaise that I had clicked on in a hurry was £2.49. What? £2.49? That’s way too much. I’d definitely seen Hellman’s mayonnaise cheaper in other supermarkets. There had to be some sort of offer to be had. The BBQ/salad season is fast approaching the end. After this current heatwave is over, who is going to want mayonnaise?
Why didn’t I clock this before? It was a huge schoolboy error on my part. Doh!
But I didn’t say I am a complete control freak and I wasn’t going to overwhelmed by this lack of foresight. Life’s too short, right? And there was probably a good reason for this price. For £2.49, I was certain that we would be getting a big jar like the last time. 600ml at least, if not bigger. Brilliant.
So imagine my shock when the shopping arrived the next day and I found a measly squeezy 430ml bottle. Even though squeezy is always at a premium, sucking easy money from the sort of people who also buy grated cheese and sliced mushrooms, 430ml still seemed a little mean for the price.
Then I examined the bottle more closely. At the top it said CLEAN LOCK CAP. And I realised that the top end of the cap which, presumably would have usually contained mayonnaise, was an extra layer of cap that meant the product had slightly further to travel out of the bottle.
On the back it explained more: the unique CLEAN LOCK CAP has been developed to stay perfectly clean and to lock the flavour of the mayonnaise in.
I stopped and stared as I read it again. OMG, I said to myself. That is.. GENIUS.
And I remembered the last time I had opened that big good value 600ml jar of Hellman’s mayonnaise. I thought, yes, sure, this has lasted ages and ages, but this final dollop that I have managed to scrap from around the sides just doesn’t cut it. It just doesn’t taste quite the same as when I opened the jar for the first time. And, of course, this bothered me as I bit into my ham salad baguette. You could really clock the fact the mayo just wasn’t as fresh.
I found myself thinking: if only someone would invent a cap which sealed in this freshness, I wouldn’t have this problem. Heck, I would even be prepared to pay more.
And lo and behold there it was in front of me. The clean lock cap. Amazing. The added bonus being that I would no longer have to deal with mayonnaise getting caught around the lid. I would no longer have to scrape it with a knife and add it to my salad. I can’t begin to think of the total sum of hours, nay days, that I have probably wasted in my 39 years on this earth doing that. Now, though, this clean lock cap has freed me up. I can do things with my life that I never thought possible.
Of course, the more cynical among you will think that the extended cap is there to make you think you are getting more mayonnaise than you actually are. And this clean lock cap technology is simply justification to put another 20p on the price, another way to take money off hurried parents as they dash to grab a few bits from the supermarket in between work and the school run.
Not me, though. It is my dream that one day this technology will be available on all squeezy bottle condiments. Ketchup, mustard, the possibilities are endless. Imagine how much easier, cleaner, fresher the world will be. I have already drafted a letter to other companies citing this mayonnaise bottle as an example. I am considering starting a charity so we can help third world nations combat the many difficulties faced by having messy caps. I may even make the inventor of the clean cap lock a patron. Heck, I have already recommended them for a knighthood.
Thank you, Hellman’s. Thank you very much.