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Ryu Ishihara will soon be raising prices on his inexpensive bowls of soba noodles for the first time in nearly a decade, as rising costs and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine take an unlikely toll on Japan’s beloved buckwheat noodles.

Though seen as one of the most quintessential of Japanese foods — and eaten on New Year’s Eve for good luck — a good part of the buckwheat that goes into the noodles comes from Russia, globally the top buckwheat producer.

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