Korean ramen reaches record $100 million export revenue in a month

Korean ramen reaches record $100 million export revenue in a monthKorean ramen reaches record $100 million export revenue in a month
via GiftWhat
South Korea’s monthly ramen exports hit the $100 million mark for the first time in April, with local movies and TV shows being credited as driving forces for the global interest.
Key points:
  • The Korea Customs Service (KCS) announced on Sunday that South Korea’s instant noodle exports earned $108.6 million in April, surpassing a previous record of $92.91 million in February.
  • The country is aiming to hit the $1 billion mark for its ramen exports this 2024.
  • May 2022 was the last time South Korea saw a significant increase in its ramen exports, with a surge of 49.3%.
The details:
  • Korean ramen has seen a steady rise in popularity since 2015, partly due to its frequent appearances in K-dramas and even K-pop videos.
  • It became even more popular during the COVID-19 pandemic, whose lockdowns fueled demand for easy-to-cook meals at home.
  • Growth rates include 29.2% in 2020, 11.7% in 2021, 13.5% in 2022 and 24.4% in 2023, amounting to $952 million in total.
  • Samyang Foods accounts for the majority of the country’s ramen exports. The company earned 385.7 billion won (around $284.5 million) in the first quarter of 2024, about 57% more year-on-year.
  • Among the company’s most popular instant noodle brands is the buldak carbonara ramen, which has publicly caught the attention of celebrities such as Cardi B and food critic Keith Lee.
  • Samyang Foods reportedly saw an 85% increase in overseas sales thanks to its carbonara variant.
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