Pizza Hut Responds After Customer Complains About 'Sexual' Ketchup in Restaurant

A British man with his mind in the gutter or desperate to get attention complained about a funny ketchup bottle label he spotted in a Pizza Hut restaurant and the chain really responded to the complaint. On Oct. 21, Adrian Shann of Hull complained to HullLive that the "Shake, Squeeze, and Squirt" ketchup label was too "sexual" to be in a family restaurant. A Pizza Hut spokesperson apologized to Shann, noting the phrase was "not meant to cause offense."

"It's not innocent in my eyes," Shann, 31, told HullLive after spotting the label on a bottle of the condiment at a local Pizza Hut restaurant. "The barbecue sauce one said 'Squeeze,' but the ketchup one said that it put me off using it. It literally sounds like an app for swingers. I do not understand how someone could put that sentence together; it's awful." Shann said he was particularly worried because Pizza Hut is marketed towards children and young families.

Shann claimed he saw a family eating at the restaurant at the same time he was there. He was shocked to see adults laughing and the children asking them what was so funny. "If I had my niece with me, I would be worried. It's definitely not appropriate," he said. He insisted on the label, which was introduced in the U.K. Pizza Hut restaurants in 2019, was "not innocent." Later, Shann shared a screenshot of a complaint he sent Pizza Hut on Oct. 26.

A Pizza Hut spokesperson later responded to Shann's complaint, HullLive reported on Saturday. "I can only apologize if you were caused any offence or upset on your recent visit to our Hut; please know it is not our intention to make any of our guests feel uncomfortable," the statement read. "The wording on our ketchup is not meant to cause offence, and sorry if this was interpreted this way. This has been the labelling of all ketchup bottles in our restaurants for some time now, and I can only apologize if this impacted the enjoyment of your email."

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If Shann likes Pizza Hut but doesn't want to be around their ketchup bottles, he could visit the chain's locations in the U.S. Although the brand was established in the U.S., there are very few dine-in locations that still exist. In October 2019, its parent company, Yum! Brands announced plans to close as many as 500 dine-in Pizza Hut restaurants as the company continued focusing on delivery and carryout orders. According to the company's website, there are over 260 Pizza Hut locations in the U.K.