Monday, March 16, 2015

Momofuku Ando , Creator of Instant noodles

I was in my office busy developing my application and I was hungry literally starving ,I couldn't get off my seat because the application development was very critical.Finally I decided to get a quick munch on something I can find & there I found instant noodles to fill in my stomach.Like me many people all around the world are getting their stomach filled in midst of busy schedule.And all credits goes to “Momofuku Ando”.


Momofuku Ando was born on March 5, 1910, in Chiayi, Taiwan. He founded Nissin Food Products Co. and the invented instant noodles; he introduced chicken ramen in 1958, debuted Cup Noodle in 1971, and in 2005 created a vacuum-packed portion of instant noodles for the Japanese astronaut aboard the Discovery space shuttle. In 2006 his company earned $131 million in profits.

How did the Noodles Idea start it.. all?

Ando was born Go Pek-Hok in 1910 into a wealthy Taiwanese family in Kagi Chō Japanese-era Taiwan, and raised by his grandparents within the city walls of Tainan Chō ( (modern-day Tainan) following the deaths of his parents His grandparents owned a small textiles store, which inspired him, at the age of 22, to start his own textiles company, using 190,000 yen, in Eirakuchō , Daitōtei, Taihoku City (modern-day Taipei).In 1933, Ando traveled to Osaka where he established a clothing company while studying economics at Ritsumeikan University.


After World War II, Ando became a Japanese citizen and moved to Japan, where he entered Ritsumeikan University and at the same time founded a small merchandising firm in Osaka with the inheritance from his family. "Momofuku" is the Japanese reading of his Chinese given name , while Andō  is a common Japanese surname.

Nissin Cup Noodles

With Japan still suffering from a shortage of food in the post-war era, the Ministry of Health tried to encourage people to eat bread made from wheat flour that was supplied by the United States. Ando wondered why bread was recommended instead of noodles, which were more familiar to the Japanese. The Ministry's response was that noodle companies were too small and unstable to satisfy supply needs, so Ando decided to develop the production of noodles by himself. The experience convinced him that "Peace will come to the world when the people have enough to eat."


On August 25, 1958, at the age of 48, and after months of trial and error experimentation to perfect his flash-frying method, Ando marketed the first package of precooked instant noodles. The original chicken flavor is called Chikin Ramen . It was originally considered a luxury item with a price of ¥35, around six times that of traditional udon and soba noodles at the time. Ando began the sales of his most famous product, Cup Noodle , on September 18, 1971 with the masterstroke of providing a waterproof polystyrene container. As prices dropped, instant ramen soon became a booming business. Worldwide demand reached 98 billion servings in 2009. As of 2007, Chicken Ramen is still sold in Japan and now retails for around ¥60, or approximately one third the price of the cheapest bowl of noodles in a Japanese restaurant.

In 1964, seeking a way to promote the instant noodle industry, Ando founded the Instant Food Industry Association, which set guidelines for fair competition and product quality, introducing several industry standards such as the inclusion of production dates on packaging and the "fill to" line. He was also the chairman of the International Ramen Manufacturers' Association. The Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum is named after him.

According to The Financial Times, Ando's invention of Cup Noodles in 1971, at the age of 61, helped spark the popularity of instant noodles overseas. He had observed that Americans ate noodles by breaking the noodles in half, putting them into a cup, and pouring hot water over the noodles. They also ate them with a fork instead of chopsticks. Ando was inspired, and felt that a Styrofoam cup—with a narrower bottom than the top—would be the ideal vessel for holding noodles and keeping them warm. Eating the noodles would then be as easy as opening the lid, adding hot water and waiting. This simplicity, efficiency and low price of Cup Noodles went on to transform Nissin's fortunes.


Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum


The Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum  is a museum dedicated to instant noodles and Cup Noodles, as well as its creator and founder, Momofuku Ando. The museum is located in Ikeda in Osaka, and is located within walking distance of Ikeda Station on the Hankyu-Takarazuka Line. Admission is free.


There is also a CupNoodles Museum located in Yokohama, which features four stories of fun-filled exhibitions and attractions. This location includes various exhibits to display the history of instant ramen and Momofuku Ando's story. Admission is free for high school age children and younger, and 500 yen for adults.

Both museums have an instant ramen workshop allowing visitors to make their own "fresh" instant noodles (fresh as in just made). Reservations must be made in advance to enjoy this feature at the museum. There is also a noodle factory where visitors can assemble their own personal Cup Noodles from pre-made ingredients for a small fee of 300 yen


Osaka location: Wednesday-Sunday, 9:30am – 4:00pm

Yokohama location: Wednesday-Monday, 10:00am – 6:00pm


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