South Korea's exports of instant noodles surpass US$100mil for first time in April, says data

SEOUL (Bernama-Yonhap): South Korea's exports of instant noodles surpassed the US$100 million mark for the first time last month on the growing popularity of Korean culture and food, data showed Sunday.

Exports of instant noodles, or "ramyeon" in Korean, reached $108.6 million in April, up 46.8 percent from a year earlier, growing at the fastest pace since May 2022, according to the Korea Customs Service (KCS).

It marks the first time the monthly figure has exceeded $100 million, Yonhap news agency reported the agency said.

Ramyeon exports have been on a constant rise since 2015 and are expected to hit a fresh high this year in line with the popularity of Korean movies, dramas and music, as well as high demand for affordable, ready-to-eat food products amid high inflation.

Last year, ramyeon exports reached a record high of US$952 million, jumping 24.4 percent from 2022.

The KCS expects the exports to surpass US$1 billion this year.

Samyang Foods Co., a major South Korean instant noodle maker, saw its sales soar 57 percent on-year to 385.7 billion won (US$284.5 million) in the first quarter.

The company said its revenue from overseas markets, in particular, shot up 85 percent thanks to the popularity of the carbonara flavor of its smash-hit spicy instant noodle item, Buldak Ramen.

Overseas revenue accounted for 75 percent of Samyang's total sales in the first quarter, according to the company. - Bernama-Yonhap

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