May 23, 2024

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A viral video comparing Shin Ramyeon sold in South Korea and Japan has sparked outrage among Korean consumers, with many alleging “ramen discrimination.”

About the video: The clip highlights the difference in the amount of soup ingredients, particularly dried garnish, between Shin Ramyeon mini cups sold in Japan and Korea, reported the Korea JoongAng Daily. The original video garnered nearly 6 million views within 10 days of its upload and has inspired other content creators to make their own comparisons.

“Even if you travel to Japan and ask what kind of Shin Ramyeon it is, it tastes different because it has more noodles,” the video uploader who is reportedly from Japan noted. ” I didn’t notice much of a difference in flavor,” but added, “the Japanese version definitely had more noodles in the small cup.”

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Longstanding debate: The online discussion has reignited a debate that has reportedly persisted for years, with consumers questioning why the Japanese version appears to have more noodles, despite the price of Shin Ramyeon in Korea and Japan being nearly identical, reported the Korea Times.

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“Ramen discrimination”: Netizens expressing their dissatisfaction noted that the price gap between the Korean and Japanese versions has narrowed due to currency fluctuations, with the Japanese Shin Ramyeon now being cheaper. This has led to accusations of “reverse discrimination” against Korean consumers. Others have called for greater transparency and fairness in product composition and pricing.

Nongshim’s response: In response to the controversy, Nongshim, the maker of Shin Ramyeon, explains the difference in ingredients is a strategy to compete with local Japanese cup noodles.

“The Japanese market tends to have a large amount of noodles in cup noodles,” an official from Nongshim explained. “Nongshim, as a latecomer, has changed the noodle ratio to increase its competitiveness in the local market.” He also touched on the company’s pricing strategy, adding, “Shin Ramyeon for Japan is a product that competes with Japanese cup noodles, so it is not reasonable to compare it with domestic products simply by price.”

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The explanation, however, has not quelled the anger, with some netizens calling for a boycott, saying, “Let’s eat the Japanese version of Shin Ramyeon instead.”

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