Which country is the world’s largest producer of mustard seed?

Answer: Canada.

You can find Canadian mustard seed used in mustard factories in France and Germany as well as in North America.

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Which has a longer history, Plochman’s Mustard or a Van Gogh painting?

Answer: Plochman’s mustard. Van Gogh wasn’t born until 1853, one year after our company started.

The Premium Mustard Mills, which eventually became Plochman, Inc., started the year before Vincent was born. Although they began about the same time, there the similarities end. A Van Gogh costs millions now, and few people own them. A bottle of Plochman's costs little, but millions own them. You can look forward to a new jar of Plochman's as being authentic. Don't expect the same from a new Van Gogh.

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How long have people been using mustard for seasoning?

Answer: For recorded history, and probably, therefore, for a long time before that.

Here are some dates that we found mentioned:

Abraham is said to have served tongue with mustard.

The Egyptians are said to have eaten mustard seeds by chewing them along with meat.

6th century BC: Pythagoras mentioned mustard as a cure for scorpion bites. (Okay, that’s not a seasoning, but it is interesting. It appears that Pythagoras had theories about more things than right triangles.)

6th Century BC: The story of Buddha, the lady, and the mustard seed.

500 BC: Aristophanes wrote of mustard-spiced stews.

200 BC: The Roman playwright, Plautus, in Pseudolus, has the cook saying: "It is rubbed with criminal mustard, which burns the eyes of those who grate it."

1st Century AD: Pliny the Elder claimed that mustard would improve lazy housewives.

9th Century AD: During Charlemagne’s reign, mustard was cultivated on imperial lands and in the monasteries in Paris.

1758: We have found unconfirmed references that Benjamin Franklin was responsible for bringing mustard to the United States.

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Our company had been making mustard for 41 years before the introduction of what mustard-loving food item at Chicago’s Columbian Exposition? (p.s. Patience Pays)

Answer: The hot dog, or at least the combination of the hot dog sausage and the hot dog bun.

You can learn more about this great event (and other theories of the hot dog’s origins) by linking to this website:


And don’t forget to see our favorite question on the Hot Dog Council’s Trivia Quiz:


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What are the origins of the term "Mustard?"

Answer: There are several theories, one that dates back to Roman times based on the use of "Must" or unfermented wine to make mustard. Two other theories come from the town motto of the town of Dijon France.

Originally mustard was called Sinapis. Some students claim that during Roman times the word Sinapis started to be replaced by words such as Mustum, Mustarum, and Mustardum as new wine, or "Must" was mixed with mustard seeds to make a paste.

More recent theories come from France. In one, the Duke of Burgundy, Philip the Bold, gave the town of Dijon a coat of arms in 1382 with the motto "MOULT ME TARDE" (based on Multum Ardeo – I ardently desire). As the story goes, the motto was adopted by the town’s many mustard-makers, who eventually shortened it into Moul-tarde (to burn much).

Similarly, another story has it that the motto was given the citizens of Dijon by King Charles VI. In this version, the motto "MOULT ME TARDE" meant "Off to Battle." A humorous side note on this story was that some opponents of the Dijon army saw the motto but missed the "ME," in the middle, and came to believe they were dealing with an army of mustard-makers.

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What religious writings include references to mustard?

Answer: Many of the world’s largest religions. We have found references from Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Bahai, Judaism, and Hinduism.

For more information, see Religious References to Mustard

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Which famous authors and speakers refer to mustard?

We have found references to mustard by Shakespeare, Alexandre Dumas, Hans Christian Andersen and John Lennon. If you find more, send them to plochman@plochman.com.

To see the references, go to: Mustard in Literature and the Arts

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What famous conqueror sent his opponent a sack of mustard seeds for intimidation?

Answer: Alexander the Great.

Darius, King of Persia, sent Alexander a bag of sesame seeds, meant to suggest the number of Darius’ troops. Alexander, in return, sent Darius a bag of mustard seeds, not only more numerous because of their smaller size, but also more potent and fiery than sesame.

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How is mustard heat different from pepper heat?

The sensation of heat from mustard comes from a volatile oil released when mustard seed is mixed with water. In very hot mustards the "heat" travels up the nose, even making your eyes water. It then dissipates, which we think is a favorable feature of mustard. Pepper heat, on the other hand, is concentrated in the mouth. It does not dissipate quickly, and it can be cumulative.

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What company made writing with food possible by inventing the first successful squeeze mustard in the 1950’s?

Answer: Plochman.

We invented our Original Squeeze Barrel mustard in the late 1950’s. The other leading brand of squeeze mustard introduced their squeeze in the early 1970’s. Now the majority of mustard in the United States is sold in squeeze packaging.

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The United States had how many states in 1852, the year we were founded?

Answer: 31

Which of the top 5 brands of mustard in the United States is still family owned and operated?

Answer: Plochman’s.

How do I send new mustard facts and trivia to Plochman?

Send an email to plochman@plochman.com

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