Chow Poison Ramen
posted by October 25 at 13:50 PMon
Two large Japanese food manufacturers have found insecticide in their instant noodles, triggering a food scare.
First, Nissin - which invented the instant noodle - recalled 500,000 pots after a woman became ill. She had eaten from a cup containing insect repellent.
Now another Japanese food giant, Myojo, says it too has found the same substance in two of its own pots.
Instant ramen was invented for economic depressions—during the food shortages after WWII, Nissin founder Momofuku Ando saw people lining up to buy bowls of soup from black-market street stalls. And voilà. He became a millionaire and dead last year of a heart attack at the age of 96. When I lived in Japan, my neighbors told me not to eat instant ramen because the flavor packet was poison that would kill all my sperm. It’s population control, they said, to get rid of the poor people.
Ramen became popular in the west during England’s economic depression in the 1970s. (In Mexico, they combine the poverty food from both hemispheres by cooking instant-ramen noodles in the orange glop you get in instant mac ‘n’ cheese.)
The first time I ever saw ramen was at my elementary school in a New Orleans. Justin Rambo—a tough-ass Cajun kid whose dad once came to class to give him a whupping after the teacher called to say he’d been acting up—would step on the plastic package to break up the noodles, then open it and pour in the flavor pack, then eat the little chunks. Soon, all the kids were eating ramen during recess.