Conspiracy theorists are always looking for evidence that the government is hiding something or doing something underhanded that may directly affect them. Sometimes they are rewarded by finding out they were right all along, in which case they can say, “I told you so” to everyone who doubted them. Online message boards occasionally include running debates on whether conspiracies exist or not; an example would be how the government tries to influence the food supply using strategies consumers wouldn’t be comfortable with. All the info about Hampton Creek available online shows that this small food producer actually encountered a problem like this one when a government-based agency tried to block sales of its sandwich spread.
There are other egg-free mayonnaise alternatives on the market, but Hampton Creek’s Just Mayo apparently was the first to be viewed as a significant threat by the egg industry. There were a few reasons for that. One was the name, which led some food industry experts to think consumers wouldn’t realize Just Mayo isn’t technically mayonnaise. Another reason was the success of the product, as consumers found it to be more similar to mayonnaise than other sandwich spreads. A third reason may have been the company’s ability to price it in line with conventional mayonnaise brands.
At least one email from the American Egg Board that was made public called Hampton Creek a “major threat” to the egg industry, according to a February 2016 article in Ad Age. The situation was referred to as a “crisis.” Government emails can be provided to journalists through the Freedom of Information Act. The lobby group sought to keep Just Mayo out of Whole Food stores, which is an unacceptable tactic under federal regulations.
So now the conspiracy theorists who believe the government has something against vegan foods had information to back up this claim. Other people were disturbed as well, including those who are allergic to eggs and welcome new egg-free products in the supermarket. U.S. residents who dislike government intrusion in consumer affairs were inclined to buy some Just Mayo, even if they are not interested in vegan foods.