Kiss your pickle goodbye

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It might be enough to turn some Newfoundlanders sour.

Habitant mustard pickles

A staple of the Jigg’s dinner and Sunday scoff is about to be taken off the table.

Zest and Habitant mustard pickles are being taken off shelves, according to Smucker Foods of Canada Corp.

In an email response to a Telegram inquiry, the company says that there was not enough consumer demand for multiple mustard pickle brands.

That explanation could be a little hard to swallow given how coveted the mustard pickle is in this province. There’s a certain amount of pride that comes from getting that one onion or cauliflower bit that’s hiding amongst the cucumbers.

Smucker Foods of Canada Corp. says it was a “difficult decision” to discontinue the sought-after side to so many local meals.

Whatever is on the shelves or hiding in grocery store back rooms is all there is left. The company says they no longer have Zest/Habitant mustard pickles available to provide.

However, before there’s mayhem at the market, Smucker Foods of Canada Corp. has a plan to get itself out of this pickle jam.

“In an effort to maintain our quality and provide consumers with the best mustard pickle product, we have updated our Bick’s Sweet Mustard pickles to offer consumers a quality replacement,” the company says.

That product is targeted to be available in stores in June. In the meantime, take time to lament the loss of a cultural gem. And for those lucky enough to score the last jars of Zest/Habitants, you best ration out your pickle portions.

Organizations: Smucker Foods of Canada

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Recent comments

  • carol Bowers
    August 10, 2016 - 18:29

    ah, so sad , love your pickles, the habitant mustard pickles had a taste all there own, will miss them so much, thank you for giving me so much enjoyment with my ham, but I will give your new pickles a chance. So thank you so much.

  • Shirley Tripp
    March 06, 2016 - 00:26

    I live in Sherwood Park Alberta and used to buy these pickles when I lived in the East, sure would be happy to get some here before they are sold out

  • Gordon earle
    March 05, 2016 - 19:46

    Why are you taking them of the shelf or nobody don't whan to make them anymore

  • Winston
    March 05, 2016 - 17:42

    Loose your favourite brand of pickle and it`s like the end of the world, 19 comments so far. That our power bills are about to double , as well as or government debt due to double, and hardly a peep. Have to wonder about Nfld intelligence levels. Now I too like my pickles, but at this rate we`ll be looking to bring back the Sprung greenhouse, needing to justify Muskrat Falls, as no one else wants that power, and demand is not as was forecast. The desire for Pickles may save us. Let Ed Martin know.

  • Hubert
    March 05, 2016 - 16:09

    I guess that they have lost a customer because the only pickles I ever buy are the Zest brand because they are the only brand that I like the mustard in. I never bought the kinds without mustard so I guess no more pickles for me. I switched from Coke to Pepsi back in the 80's when Coke closed the plant in St. John's and trucked the product in. I have never bought a Coke product since and I will now boycott Bicks and, if they have one, their parent company.

  • Anna
    March 05, 2016 - 12:41

    Go to Belbin's and purchase their homemade sweet mustard pickles, they are the best.

  • Jan C.
    March 05, 2016 - 12:24

    we do not waant kiss pickle goodbye!

  • Phyllis Blakely
    March 05, 2016 - 12:15

    So sorry to hear about that, you have the best piclels on the market, going to miss you.

  • roy206
    March 05, 2016 - 11:30

    Good news for the local pickle consumers will be forced to buy local, this benefits everyone, you can even recycle the mason jar.... I live on the west coast and Melvin Rideout's pickle maker is my hero.

  • Masterwatch
    March 05, 2016 - 10:37

    Support Newfoundlanders. We have our own producer here on the Avalon.

  • Masterwatch
    March 05, 2016 - 08:32

    Buy local!

  • Darryl
    March 05, 2016 - 08:29

    Who cares if they take it off the shelf? It's not difficult to make your own mustard pickles. Smuckers also isn't the only company that sells them.

  • dangeouslycheesy
    March 05, 2016 - 06:42

    Im a huge supporter of local products and establishments but quality and taste of the local brand is sub par. Barely a mustard flavor, no pickle. I was pretty excited to dive into a local owned mustard pickle but my hopes amd dreams were dashed when i actually bit into the weak mustard flavore pickle

  • Owen Hayes
    March 05, 2016 - 00:58

    Now it time to support your own and buy from Newfoundland Jam & Pickle Factory in Perrys Cove

    • Bill Noseworthy
      March 05, 2016 - 16:37

      Sorry. Their mustard pickles aren't fit.

    • Bill Noseworthy
      March 05, 2016 - 17:46

      Sorry. Their mustard pickles aren't fit.

  • Glenn Sharpe
    March 04, 2016 - 22:06

    I will never buy another suckers product if this happens

  • C'est Dommage
    March 04, 2016 - 21:00

    Pickled cucumbers, onions, and eggs are popular here. Chow Chow, a tart vegetable mix, is super-popular in the Maritime Provinces. So sad about this. Breaks my frikin' heart! This is something we need. F--k healthcare and roads. The Newfie-Pickle-Preppers are out gutting Piper's of every bit of this Habitant staple. They are targeting beets as well. Newfies are swarming like locust, proving the power of the press to mobilize. Homestyle, in Quebec lingo? Pea soup, etc. Habitant? Is this Quebecoise or Newfoundland tradition? (Now, come on by's and LADIES (WOMEN AND GENTLEMEN, genderless children, step right up, ergonomically, and witness the best journalism on knows we can't share it...haha...our genius politicians and energy Tsars will not allow us to share anything with Quebec...) I know I am supposed to hate them, but I cannot. I love Quebec: "This quaint Québécois restaurant has great ambience - wooden floors and ceiling, thick stone walls, wooden tables - with a casual, relaxed atmosphere. Snowshoes decorate the ceiling. The wait staff are excellent - extremely friendly and ready to chat and answer any questions about the menu or about Old Québec. We actually had two meals here - dinner on our first night and lunch on our second day. Dinner was outstanding. Homemade pork rinds (in a maple syrup sauce), freshly baked bread, and pickles in a sweet mustard sauce were delivered to our table while we perused the menu. My husband had the rabbit "wings" (a double order of this "app" as his "main" - they were beautifully done - very tasty!) and I truly had the best "deconstructed" Shepherd's pie ("paté chinois") I have ever had - it was awesome! We shared a "Poor Man's pudding" for dessert (somewhat similar to sticky toffee pudding) - it was very nice (and sweet, so ideal for sharing). We enjoyed our dinner and the relaxed atmosphere so much, we returned for lunch on the next (very snowy) day. We appreciated the warm, cozy ambience as we came in from the bitterly cold day (the "real feel" was minus 22 degrees Celsius). Again, sweet mustard pickles and warm bread were delivered to our table. We started with a lovely Canadian pea soup - hot and tasty." Nice. Not like Newfoundland at all. Totally distinct societies, for sure.

  • Jackie Barrett
    March 04, 2016 - 20:02

    Now Canadians are experiencing the consequences of iconic food brands falling into American hands as one popular product after another is phased out like Zest and Habitant in the hands of Smuckers and Schwartz's in the hands of McCormick and Company. In the case of Schwartz, after their famous Halifax based iconic mustard, spices, and coffee company was sold to McCormick and Company in 1984, they stopped selling products under the Schwartz name, including their famous mustard packed in jars with playing card like graphics. Ironically, while Schwartz's mustard, spices, and other products are still sold in Great Britain, its no longer sold in its original country, not Great Britain, but Canada. Perhaps Canadian based food processors should take note on the consequences of selling out to foreigners as iconic brands will be discontinued as it already happened to Schwartz, Zest, and Habitant.

  • Karyn
    March 04, 2016 - 19:47

    Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!Please don't do this, can't eat my food without them!

  • Jackie mcgraht
    March 04, 2016 - 17:49

    Everyone should boycott all there products. They can't tell me that mustard pickles don't sell. Every persons I know has a bottle or two in there cupboard. So everyone don't buy any of their other things and see how they like it when their whole business starts to slid.

  • Steve Roil
    March 04, 2016 - 17:07

    ... It's not like Donald Trump becoming president of the United States. It's only a friggin' pickle!!

    • bun
      March 06, 2016 - 10:03

      Maybe if The Donald had been subject to some great Newfoundland hospitality, a jiggs dinner meal with mustard pickles, he just might be a little kinder to people. Those outsides who have been blessed with a little hospitality from Newfoundlanders have life changes for the experience, usually for the better. The presidential candidate, just may need a mustard pickle....

  • observer
    March 04, 2016 - 16:38

    Just like Elvis, John Lennon and Michael Jackson............ I will always remeber where I was the day I heard Mustard Pickle died.

  • Wetcoast Norman
    March 04, 2016 - 15:07

    Newfoundland Jam & Pickle Factory Inc. in Perry’s Cove

  • Growup
    March 04, 2016 - 13:39

    Why is everyone concerned?!??? Like a earlier post,start buying local from 'newfoundland jam and pickle factory' ALL the way from carbonear,NL. Support them

  • Brian
    March 04, 2016 - 12:23

    These mega corps are too large and should be broken up.

  • JD
    March 04, 2016 - 11:38

    Come on Purity - or Coleman's... Time to up your game

  • Support local
    March 04, 2016 - 11:12

    Why not mention a Newfoundland made alternative in the article and support local business.

    • Pedal right through the firewall
      March 04, 2016 - 12:41

      Agreed. Berkley makes some good pickles and should now get some more sales.

  • Louise
    March 04, 2016 - 10:55


  • Eric Baggs
    March 04, 2016 - 10:21

    I may be wrong but wasn't the Zest and Bics line of business produced in Canada and subsequently closed down and shipped to the states (USA) laying off hundreds of Canadians? I personally don't think we owe any allegiance to Smucker's for their cavalier approach to Canadians. Their is a company in Nfld and Lab. that makes a very good pickle that we should get behind and increase the number of jobs her.All of the ingredients can be grown here and would help increase the diversity of work opportunities in the province.