Cold Cup Noodle
Reuters reports that Nissin’s Cup Noodle is marketing cold instant noodles as the thing to eat this summer, and apparently it is linked to the fact that there will be electricity shortages due to Japan’s nuclear shutdown:
The cold version is made by mixing ice – a lot of it – into noodles that have been prepared the usual way. This makes the noodles a bit chewier, while the edge is taken off the soup’s usual salty flavour.
The new product has clearly hit a need in Japan, which suffered power shortages last summer and faces another serious energy crunch this year due to the shutdown of most of the nation’s nuclear plants after the Fukushima nuclear crisis set off by the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Boiling noodles and the freezing ice to cool down the noodles uses more electricity than just boiling the noodles, but I suppose it’s not much electricity compared to what an air conditioner might use.
The electricity shortage is already noticeable in parts of Tokyo. Many shops have reduced their usage of air conditioning and some high rise buildings are shutting down elevators. It makes for a very unpleasant and sweaty experience.