While the last decade has seen the proliferation of food delivery services such as UberEats and Deliveroo, Japanese instant noodle pioneer Nissin Foods says it maintains a unique advantage in one category: soup noodles.
Speaking with CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” the company’s executive director and CEO, Kiyotaka Ando, said consumers are now coming back to the instant noodle market after the initial loss of demand to delivery services.
While acknowledging the possibility for consumers to order soup noodles through a delivery service, Ando said the typical 20 to 30 minute wait often results in low temperature soup and noodles that have become too soft upon the food's arrival.
“If people want to eat noodles, soup noodles, people need to go to (a) noodle shop or need to eat instant noodles,” Ando said.
As a result, he added, the company has branched into the “premium” category by collaborating with Japanese ramen chains such as Ippudo to launch instant noodle products in markets such as China and Hong Kong.
“This kind of premium instant noodle will keep growing,” Ando said, allowing the overall market to recover as a result.
For the health-conscious, Nissin Foods has also introduced a series of Cup Noodle Light options featuring non-fried noodles with lower calories and less fat while maintaining a texture and flavor which Ando touts as being “very similar” to their traditional counterparts.
That way, Ando said, consumers can enjoy their instant noodles with the “original flavors with new trends.”