Exports of South Korean instant noodles, popularly known as ‘Ramyeon’, have reportedly hit the $70 million last month. The growth, the industry’s first such milestone, comes amid the rising international popularity of South Korean pop culture as well as the pandemic.

As per the Korea Customs Service and food sector sources, ramyeon exports increased by 20% year over year to around $71.58 million in March, rising 35.8% from February. In December last year, ramyeon exports set a new monthly high of over $66.66 million.

It was the first time in March that ramyeon export volume topped 20,000 metric tons.

Among the top market’s for the food product are countries such as the United States ($9.75 Mn), Thailand ($2.9 Mn), Malaysia ($2.53 Mn), the Netherlands ($2.2 Mn), the Philippines ($2.57 Mn), Japan ($5.71 Mn), Hong Kong ($2.26 Mn), as well as Canada ($2.89 Mn).

On the other hand, Australia ($1.92 Mn), Taiwan ($1.97 Mn), Vietnam ($1.13 Mn), the United Arab Emirates ($1.78 Mn), as well as Mexico ($1.05 Mn), all had exports above $1 million.

Exports of ramyeon to Russia in March hit $54,000, down 58% from a year before as well as 59.7% from February. In February, Ukraine's exports totaled $36,000, but in March, they were almost zero.

According to sources from the food industry, the steady expansion of ramyeon exports, is due to the worldwide popularity of Korean dramas, movies, and music.

The appearance of Chapaguri, a combination of Chapaghetti, and spicy udon-like noodles, called Neoguri, and instant black bean noodles, in Oscar-winning South Korean film ‘Parasite’ (2019), has piqued the curiosity of K-culture fans overseas, enjoying significant demand over there.

Meanwhile, the Buldakbokeummyeon, or Hot Spicy Chicken Noodles from Samyang Foods, have been a great hit in Southeast Asia for a long time.

The Middle East has notably seen an increase in demand for instant noodles manufactured in Korea.

With the pandemic, the global supply for ramyeon as an emergency food or a quick supper has increased all over the world as people remained at home for a longer periods of time.

Nongshim, Korea's largest instant noodle and snack manufacturer, stated that the volume of exports of ramyeon produced in Korea is comparable to the ramyeon’s sales volume in other facilities in the United States and China.

Source credit: http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20220425000535