H. J. Heinz Company has reformulated its world-famous ketchup to comply with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s National Salt Reduction Initiative.

It’s the latest salvo in the food wars.

According to Hot Air, Heinz is one of 16 food manufacturers and vendors to reduce the salt content in their products by 25%. Others brands include Au Bon Pain and Starbucks, the pizza chain Uno Chicago Grill, quick-service chain Subway, and foodservice companies Boar’s Head, FreshDirect, Goya, Hain Celestial, Kraft, LiDestri, Mars Food, McCain Foods, Red Gold, Unilever and White Rose.

Heinz is, of course, confident the new formulation will be a hit.

On the other hand, it could be the latest New Coke, which, you may remember, was resoundingly rejected by consumers when unveiled in 1985.

650 million bottles of Heinz Ketchup are sold worldwide in more than 140 countries, with annual sales of more than $1.5 billion.

5/15/10 21:11 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.