Ratings agency Standard & Poor's has downgraded A1 Steak Sauce from A1 to A3, while Heinz 57 has been placed on negative outlook. The US recently lost its top-tier AAA rating from S&P.
One of the main reasons cited for the downgrade is that "people are eating more ramen noodles and less steak during the recession."
S&P says that A1 in recent years has had little competition, with great margins. The product has been around for over 100 years and has great brand awareness.
Further reasons for the downgrade include the amount of salt that is in the sauce. One tablespoon of A1 (soon to be called A3) contains an eighth of your daily dose of sodium. S&P is skeptical that anyone uses as little as one tablespoon of sauce.
S&P says they are maintaining a negative outlook on the steak sauce. This reflects the potential for a further decline. The report also says that the sauce's outlook "could be stabilized at the current level if the overall sirloin situation were to be resolved conclusively."
Full report from S&P: S&P lowers A1 Steak Sauce to capture downside risk.