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2022 Coolest Things Made in the Ozarks: Frank’s RedHot Sauce

The French’s Food Co. LLC

Posted online

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In a competitive hot sauce market, marketers must grab attention before reaching consumers’ taste buds. The Frank’s RedHot team knows this, and, voila, the slogan: “I put that s--- on everything.” Go ahead, insert the “bleep” like in the commercials. The majority of the sauce is made in The French’s Food Co.’s plant in Springfield’s Partnership Industrial Center. And it’s carried in over 90% of U.S. grocery stores and in over 20 countries. So, French’s is literally sending Frank’s from Springfield to the world.

SBJ: How is Frank’s determined to be “America’s No. 1 Hot Sauce”? By whom?
April Cole (Springfield plant controller): We know it’s the No. 1 hot sauce because consumers tell us it is every time they pick a bottle of Frank’s RedHot up off the shelf. We use a [syndicated data] tool that tells us what they are purchasing across the category and how quickly bottles are being enjoyed and repurchased. It’s also the most searched-for hot sauce brand in the last 12 months, according to Google Trends.

SBJ: What’s the manufacturing process for the local employees?
Cole: We have 500 employees in the Ozarks, some of whom help to blend, cook, mill, bottle and distribute Frank’s RedHot. These 500 people make over 100,000 gallons of Frank’s RedHot every day and over 80 million bottles every year so Frank’s fanatics can “put that s--- on everything!”

SBJ: Is Springfield the only production site for Frank’s?
Cole: Springfield is our main production location. However, we manufacture other formats and types of Frank’s products elsewhere.

SBJ: What about the origin story: The secret ingredient in the original buffalo wings created in Buffalo, New York, in 1964 – can that be proven?
Cole: We know that in 1964 the Anchor Bar & Grill, in Buffalo, New York, first combined Frank’s RedHot with melted butter to create a wing sauce. Many continue to combine our original cayenne pepper sauce with melted butter themselves, mixing it the traditional way, but we also make it a little easier for lovers of Frank’s by offering a ready-to-toss Buffalo Wing Sauce. The only way to really prove it is to head to Buffalo and try it for yourself or buy some wing sauce and toss them at home.

SBJ: We’ve heard there’s a tanker truck full of Frank’s available. Tell us more.
Cole: While there are tanker trucks of Frank’s RedHot for some customers, most consumers will be more familiar with our most popular packaging formats, the 5-ounce, 12-ounce and 23-ounce glass bottles. But Frank’s RedHot is produced and packaged in Springfield in many different formats – from as small as a 6-gram packet to half-gallon, 1 gallon and pouches, and industrial drums and totes.

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