updated 8/28/2004 5:01:40 PM ET 2004-08-28T21:01:40

Two upstart ketchup companies are offering an alternative to consumers who want condiments with a GOP flavor.

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Sellers of W Ketchup and Bush Country Ketchup say their products are a fun way for the Republican faithful to dress up their freedom fries without using a product labeled by the H.J. Heinz Co., a Pittsburgh firm that sells 660 million bottles of ketchup every year.

Teresa Heinz Kerry is the wife of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry. Although Heinz Kerry gained much of her $500 million portfolio through her Heinz inheritance, she does not serve on the board and is not involved with the management of the company.

That hasn’t stopped entrepreneurs from seeking a GOP condiment niche. Banker Bill Zachary, who co-founded W Ketchup in Eagle Bridge, N.Y., said stock owned by the Heinz family — less than 4 percent — can still fund causes that Kerry’s wife supports.

Zachary said the product is nonpartisan, yet the sales pitch for W Ketchup is: “You don’t support Democrats. Why should your ketchup?”

“We kind of wanted it to be a fun way for people to show their stripes,” Zachary said. A portion of revenue goes to scholarships for the children of soldiers who have been killed, he said.

Bush Country co-founder Patrick Spero has no qualms about promoting his ketchup as the choice for Republicans.

“Our goal here is to re-elect the president,” Spero said.

Spero said he will likely fold the company once the election is over, perhaps with the last shipment carrying a label with the word “victory.”

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