The Noodle Narrative: The Global Rise of an Industrial Food into the Twenty-First Century
By Frederick Errington, Deborah Gewertz , and Tatsuro Fujikura.
Tasty, convenient, and cheap, instant noodles are one of the most remarkable industrial foods ever. Consumed around the world by millions, they appeal to young and old, affluent and impoverished alike. The authors examine the history, manufacturing, marketing, and consumption of instant noodles.
By focusing on three specific markets, they reveal various ways in which these noodles enable diverse populations to manage their lives. The first market is in Japan, the second is in the United States, and the third is in Papua New Guinea, where instant noodles arrived only recently and are providing cheap food options to the urban poor, all the while transforming them into aspiring consumers.
Finally, this study examines the global "Big Food" industry. As one of the food system's singular achievements, the phenomenon of instant noodles provides insight into the pros and cons of global capitalist provisioning. Paper: 216 pp.