Saitama-based ramen noodle restaurant operator Hiday Co. revealed Wednesday that its workers had formed a labor union, with some 3,000 foreign employees — mostly part-timers — joining the union's ranks.

The move apparently reflects a growing need for secure working environments for the nation's increasing foreign workforce and an awareness of labor issues.

The noodle chain operator hopes that such an organization protecting the rights of its employees within the company could actually work to the firm's advantage.