You’re craving a snack, something warm and filling but easy to prepare. The first thing you think of? Instant noodles.
Known for their accessibility, affordability, and almost universal palatability, instant noodles are beloved across the globe. But do you know how the fondness for it came about?
The history of instant noodles
Interestingly enough, the history of instant noodles is quite recent. Invented in 1958 by Momofuku Ando, the world’s first instant noodle was a Chicken Ramen. Momofuku spent a year perfecting his invention in a humble shed located at his Osaka residence. He wanted to make ramen a lot faster so he made noodles that can be cooked with just hot water.
By 1971, he was struck with inspiration to make his creation even more global. Momofuku established the brand Nissin and introduced the product CUPNOODLES.
In 2005, Momofuku was able to create Space Ram (also known as Space Ramen), a type of instant noodles that can be prepared and consumed safely in outer space. Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi was the first person to try it out. Soichi eventually brought it with him to the International Space Station in 2009.
The global appeal of instant noodles
Momofuku’s desire to make instant noodles a massive success in different parts of the world has been fulfilled. Over the years, different countries, mostly in Asia, have produced their versions of instant noodles.
According to recent statistics, the instant noodle global market has an estimated value of USD24.3 billion (approximately SGD32.5 billion) and is expected to grow up to USD33 billion (around SGD44.2 billion) by 2030.
Scrolling through the food side of TikTok or Instagram Reels, you’ll see the relevance of this food item, with thousands of quick recipes starring instant noodles shared on the platforms.