Monday, November 24, 2014
Born in Vietnam, David Tran named his company, Huy Fong Foods, after the boat by which he immigrated to America. Seeking to create a kind of Heinz ketchup for the Vietnamese-American community, he bottled and sold his own unique take on Thai sriracha sauce, blending fresh red jalepeños, garlic, sugar, salt, and vinegar. Without the help of any advertising, his product has since exploded in popularity far beyond its original audience. It is now a global product sold in major supermarkets, heralded by celebrity chefs, and trumpeted by zealous fans across the Internet.
For a while. Huy Fong Foods was embroiled in a controversy (and a lawsuit) in Southern California due to objections from some quarters over the smells generated by the manufacturing of the company's signature hot sauce.