So what's to come of Sriracha? Will it just live harmlessly and sans cachet as a regular condiment that our kids and their kids will take for granted when they pull their drones up to a 3D food printer? I remember my grandfather once going on a rant about how, when he was young, there was only one kind of mustard, and now there are 700, and though this eventually turned into a tirade against the Japanese during World War II, the point is that, after all the hoopla and breathless press and hipster fetishization and rejections, we might just be seeing the process through which our generation accepts a new product as part of its life. Sriracha could be our 700 mustards.
Or it could just be a Babson case study on what can happen when the Internet wrestles control of a product's narrative away from the company that made it, and forces that company to play catch up monetizing its own thing after the Internet's fickle focus has shifted somewhere else. Last year, Huy Fong finally began expanding into other products, announcing a deal with Washington-based POP! Gourmet Foods to release a line of official Huy Fong Sriracha foods (popcorn chips, ketchup, and croutons), and opening a gift shop at the factory, selling -- as Lam detailed in an email -- "T-shirts, boxers, aprons, socks, lunchboxes, playing cards, beer, giant inflatables, plushy, sippy cups, shot glasses, coffee mugs, keychains, beef jerky, popcorn, chips, etc." Products, she wrote, "that appeal to everyone."