Chicken Ramen out to conquer world

by Reiji Yoshida

Fifty years after its invention, the world’s first instant noodle product is setting out to conquer the world.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the invention of its long-selling Chicken Ramen, Nissin Food Products Co. will release in March seven different versions specifically targeting customers in the United States, Brazil, Hungary, mainland China, Hong Kong, Indonesia and India.

This is the first time Japan’s arguably best-known noodle product will be marketed abroad other than in Hong Kong.

The history of instant noodle products, of which 91.6 billion were sold worldwide in 2006, started when Nissin founder Momofuku Ando created Chicken Ramen in 1958.

Catering to local tastes, each of the seven versions has a different flavor. The U.S.-targeted noodles are flavored with onion and taste better when cooked in a microwave. The chicken soup of the Brazilian noodles is especially thick and the Indian version is spiced with turmeric and chili.