NISSIN FOODS Group Leads the Way in the Future of Food & Health


Executive Vice President & Representative Director, COO

President & Representative Director

The Daunting Task of Forecasting Change in the World:
Setting Aside Past Success & Experience to Focus on What Truly Matters

Corporations today face an environment that is in a perpetual state of flux. From Russia's invasion of Ukraine to the abrupt depreciation of the yen and rising inflation, we have witnessed many unforeseen events in the past year alone. Recognizing the difficulty of predicting these shifts, we must be prepared to navigate any situation, knowing that reliance on past knowledge and experience will inevitably lead to stagnation in our business.

What is imperative now is our ability to focus on what truly matters. To discern the underlying realities behind the immediate events we face, we may even need to shake off past achievements and conventional wisdom. This requires courage, but I am reminded that Nissin Foods was born and has thrived by defying convention. If we had let experience and precedent dictate our lineup, revolutionary products like CHICKEN RAMEN, the world's first instant noodles, or our pioneering CUP NOODLES would not exist. Our founder's spirit of Shoku-so I-sei (lit. “Create foods to serve society”) remains a core value of our business, one that will never change no matter the era or environment. It is an essential part of our identity that we must continue to embrace.

Our Challenge of Becoming a Century Brand Company:
Thriving 100 Years After Our Founding

When I became president of Nissin Foods in 2015, I came up with two slogans: “Becoming a Century Brand Company" and "Beyond Instant Foods." Both underscore our commitment to face the essence of our being without relying upon our past growth.

The year 2023 marks the 65th anniversary of CHICKEN RAMEN, with NISSIN YAKISOBA celebrating its 60th and DEMAE ICCHO its 55th. Furthermore, CUP NOODLES and NISSIN DONBEI continue to set record sales. While brands are generally said to go out of business after 30 to 40 years, our challenge is to elevate the value of the Nissin brand even further, ensuring its continued strength 100 years after its founding. Our challenge of becoming a “Century Brand Company” is to enhance the value of the Nissin Foods portfolio now more than ever.

A longstanding brand could arguably be seen as an aging brand. The connection to CUP NOODLES, for example, may be weaker for the younger generation, especially for those under 20. To become a "Century Brand Company," it's pivotal to maintain a fresh outlook for our brand to secure a new generation of loyal users. As such, our brand communication strategy unfolds through a unique blend of TV commercials, increased in-store visibility, and social media marketing. Through these channels, we're focused on capturing the attention of younger demographics, fostering a cycle that leads them from awareness to in-store purchases.

Beyond Instant Foods
Creating New Value as a Ceaselessly Innovative Company

Our second slogan, "Beyond Instant Foods," embodies our commitment to forging an entirely new kind of food culture. While we remain dedicated to elevating CUP NOODLES to a global brand, a singular focus on instant noodles will eventually be our undoing. Though NISSIN FOODS Group achieved its market capitalization target of 1 trillion yen in 2020, our vision is to double this to 2 trillion and eventually reach 5 trillion yen. To do so, we must consistently generate new value, which is the intent behind the slogan "Beyond Instant Foods."

Instant ramen was born in the postwar era, rooted in our founder's desire to provide easily accessible food for all. Now, more than half a century later, some regions are so saturated with food that it is being discarded as waste, marking a transition from postwar scarcity to an era of excessive calories leading to obesity and nutrient deficiencies due to extreme dieting.

Against this backdrop, we aim to address modern social challenges related to food, leveraging our proprietary food technology honed over years of R&D in instant noodles and other products. In May 2022, we launched our KANZEN MEAL series in pursuit of the perfect balance between nutrition and taste. The wide-ranging product lineup extends from instant noodles and cup rice to smoothies, granolas, and even frozen foods, which we launched in September 2022. In FY 3/2023, the first year of its launch, we achieved our sales target of 3 billion yen, marking a promising start. In the future, we plan to extend our food technology to our partners and diversify touchpoints with customers through convenience store rice balls, bread, supermarket bento boxes, and company cafeteria menus. We've set a near-term goal to grow KANZEN MEAL into a 10 billion yen brand by 2024.

Moreover, in July 2023, the Optimized Nutri-Dense Meals Association was established to promote Optimized Nutri-Dense Meals that balance essential nutrients and achieve well-being through food for all humanity. Joined by major retailers, food and nutrition specialists, and other stakeholders, we aim to collaborate across sectors to champion the potential of Optimized Nutri-Dense Meals as a new growth industry originating in Japan.

Pursuing New Food Possibilities as an EARTH FOOD CREATOR

We are committed to maximizing our existing value and generating new, unprecedented value. We see this as the mission of the NISSIN FOODS Group, a legacy inherited from our founder, to always buck the conventional wisdom of the day. As the world pioneer of instant noodles, we aim to elevate our brand's prestige and global reach. In new ventures, we plan to carve out entirely fresh terrains. My vision sees the simple, convenient, and delicious value proposition of instant noodles evolving into a functional product with balanced nutrition. By offering a paradoxical value - "sublimely junky yet supremely healthy" - we aspire to enhance happiness and health worldwide.

The realm of food and health is rife with potential, a fierce battleground where companies worldwide vie for dominance. Amidst such intense competition, the question arises: how do we lead the future of food? I believe it's pivotal for every employee of Nissin Foods to be an agent of change and to revel at the forefront of this transformation. As an “EARTH FOOD CREATOR,” our dedication to progress is unwavering, ever in pursuit of innovative food possibilities.