Heinz wants to buy new boat for sailor who survived for weeks lost at sea largely off of ketchup

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Monday, February 27, 2023
Heinz wants to buy new boat for man who survived for weeks on ketchup
Heinz began "asking the general public to try and help with the hunt" for the Ketchup Boat Guy.

The sailor who spent weeks lost at sea in January, surviving largely off of ketchup, could have a new, state-of-the-art boat coming to him.

And the handsome gift would be thanks to Ketchup giant Heinz, who had been trying to locate Elvis Francois.

The company posted a callout to social media on February 14th, hoping to track down the elusive Dominica sailor. According to Heinz's social media, they reached out to the government of Dominica, the island nation where Francois is from, as well as the Colombian navy, which rescued him northwest of Colombia's Puerto Bolívar.

Heinz said none of those attempts to find Francois panned out.

So the ketchup retailer began "asking the general public to try and help with the hunt," according to a statement shared with CNN over email.

"We're also asking for any credible leads to contact Elvis so we can help cover a new boat equipped with full navigational technology to avoid another disaster in the future," added the company.

Heinz also suggested fans use the hashtag #FindTheKetchupBoatGuy to amplify their search.

However, according to reports from Dominican news site EmoNews, they located Francois.

The news outlet posted a Facebook Live video with Francois. The official Heinz Facebook account commented, saying "Incredible. We've hopped into your DMs - let's get Elvis his boat!"

In an update Saturday, EmoNews shared that Heinz met with Francois over Zoom.

Francois, 47, was repairing his boat near the Dutch part of the island of Saint Martin in December when his boat was pulled out to sea. He told Colombian authorities that he lacked the navigational knowledge to return to shore and spent 24 days at sea. He survived off a bottle of ketchup, garlic powder, and Maggi stock cubes, which he mixed with water.

He was rescued after a plane spotted his sailboat with "help" engraved into the hull, according to Colombian authorities.

The CNN Wire & © 2023 contributed to this report.