Nagasaki boasts local wheat for ‘chanpon’

Kyodo

Nagasaki Prefecture has developed a new type of wheat fit for production of “chanpon” noodles, a local speciality.

Officials in the prefectural government say chanpon noodles made with locally grown wheat will be served in restaurants as early as 2015.

According to the officials, most eateries serving the wheat-based local favorite have been using imported wheat, mostly from the United States and Australia.

The decision to develop a new type of wheat was based on demands from people in the restaurant business arguing that locally grown crops were insufficient even though they wanted “to produce the noodle dish using grain grown in the prefecture.”

The wheat development project, launched in 2006, was conducted jointly with the Kyushu Okinawa Agricultural Research Center based in Kumamoto Prefecture.

A committee comprised of representatives from noodle makers and flour millers selected the seed types of the highest quality from about a thousand artificially bred hybrid seeds, based on taste and yield size.

The project team managed to develop the new wheat variety in 2012 after six years of work, and their application for variety registrations under the name “Nagasaki W2″ was approved by the government last July.