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Annual Hot Dog Lunch On Capitol Hill Celebrates National Hot Dog Month

Wednesday, July 19, 2000

Washington, DC - It will be a banner day for all things American as hot dogs, baseball and politics converge on Capitol Hill today in celebration of July’s National Hot Dog Month. More than 1,000 Capitol Hill staff, lawmakers and federal agency officials are expected to join three baseball legends at the 2000 Hot Dog Lunch, sponsored by the American Meat Institute.

The luncheon will feature a variety of popular hot dog and sausage products from lunch sponsors Armour Swift-Eckrich, Ball Park Brands, Farmland Foods, Hormel Foods Corporation and Oscar Mayer Foods.

Also sponsoring products at the lunch are the American Bakers Association, Frito Lay, H.J. Heinz Co, Hostess Co, Hard Times Café, International Bottled Water Association, Phillip Morris/Miller Brewing Company, the National Soft Drink Association, Nabisco, Inc., Steinfelds Pickle Products and the Snack Food Association.

On hand to sign autographs will be Hall of Fame baseball great Whitey Ford, Baltimore Orioles legend Boog Powell and Wilmer Fields, who played for Washington, DC’s Homestead Grays in the Negro Leagues on eight championship teams between 1939 and 1950.

The crowd will not go home hungry, as the Council has ordered 4,000 hot dogs—enough to circle the Capitol dome four times. While the 4,000 hot dogs Washingtonians will eat at the lunch may seem a large number, it is only a fraction of the seven billion hot dogs Americans eat between Memorial Day and Labor Day or the 20 billion that the nation consumes in a year.

Because it is an election year, the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council polled Representatives and Senators in the U.S. Congress to see which toppings our lawmakers prefer on their hot dogs. The Council poll revealed that 73 percent of Republican lawmakers prefer mustard on their hot dog compared to 47 percent of Democrat lawmakers. In keeping with the mustard-leaning tendencies of the Republican party, Texas Governor George W. Bush prefers mustard and relish on his hot dog.

The poll revealed that Democrats in the House and Senate are deeply divided over the ketchup/mustard issue. While 47 percent of Democrats preferred mustard, 35 percent preferred ketchup on their hot dogs. Republicans in the House and Senate are unified in their support of mustard on their hot dog, with 73 percent preferring mustard to only 17 percent of Republican lawmakers opting for ketchup.

“"While Capitol Hill may disagree over toppings, there is consensus on one issue: the hot dog is one of America’s favorite foods,” said AMI President J. Patrick Boyle. “The Hot Dog Lunch has become an institution, just as hot dogs are an American institution.”

AMI represents the interests of packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal and turkey products and their suppliers throughout North America. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute provides legislative, regulatory and public relations services, conducts scientific and economic research, offers marketing and technical assistance and sponsors education programs. The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council is a project of the American Meat Institute Foundation and provides useful consumer and media information about processed meats. In addition, the Council conducts scientific research to benefit the hot dog and sausage industry.

For more information contact:
Janet Riley
Vice President, Public Affairs
James Ratchford
Manager, Public Affairs

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