• Press Releases
  • 2020.03.24

Pulmuone Asian Noodle Sales in US Rapidly Grow with 6-fold Increase in 4 Years

◦ Pulmuone’s Asian noodle sales in US grew from $ 5M in 2015 to $ 30M in 2019

◦ With brisk sales of its Asian noodles in Costco, Pulmuone expands product lineup

◦ Pulmuone continues to broaden its US portfolio from groceries to fresh convenience foods



SEOUL – March 24th, 2020 – Pulmuone, a South Korean fresh food company and the U.S. tofu market leader, is extending in Asian noodle market in the U.S. with its premium fresh noodles.


Pulmuone, which entered the U.S. mainstream market of Asian noodles in 2015 with premium fresh noodles, announced on Mar 24 that its annual gross sales of Asian noodles grew six-fold in last four years (2015-2019.)



▲ Pulmuone Asian Noodle Sales



Pulmuone began to sell udon, cold, knife-cut and other types of noodles at Korean food markets to 2.5M U.S. Korean population and Asian ethnicities. The company stepped up to the U.S. mainstream Asian noodle market with premium fresh noodle products in 2015, posting annual sales of $ 5M. Led by solid performance of Black Bean Sauce Noodles and Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon in Costco stores, the number has increased at a rapid pace to reach $ 30M in 2019, which was a 85% increase from the year before.


Having successfully entered the U.S. groceries market with tofu and kimchi products, Pulmuone is expanding its U.S. portfolio to premium convenience fresh noodles.



▲ Pulmuone Asian noodle products (clockwise from top left)

Black Bean Sauce Noodles, Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon, Knife-cut Noodles, and Beef Udon



The U.S. Asian noodles market, which is estimated at $ 200M, has consisted mainly of relatively cheap instant noodles with flavoring powder. Pulmuone adopted a strategy of gaining a competitive advantage on product quality with premium fresh noodles and started its business by selling Black Bean Sauce Noodles at Costco stores across the U.S.


Black Bean Sauce Noodles is Pulmuone's kickstarter project that surprised and attracted U.S. buyers and consumers. Pulmuone first introduced its premium fresh noodles to U.S. consumers by hosting a Costco roadshow of Black Bean Sauce Noodles in 2015. The Korean-inspired black noodle earned positive feedback from customers, many of who were familiar with the dish starred in recent Korean movies.


With the successful launching of Black Bean Sauce Noodles, Pulmuone could boost the number of its Costco locations to more than 100 and expand its product lineup. In December 2016, Pulmuone launched a new product "Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon," a soybean-sauce-based fresh Asian noodles with mixed vegetable topping. Bringing home the authentic taste of Asian restaurants, Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon is a popular product of Pulmuone and sold by more than 300 Costco stores in the U.S.



▲ Pulmuone Beef Udon and Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon placed at US Costco stores



Pulmuone's rapid growth in Asian noodle market in the U.S. since 2016 was driven by the strong performance of its premium fresh noodles. After entering Black Bean Sauce Noodles to the U.S. costco stores, Pulmuone's gross sales of Asian noodle category posted $ 8M. In 2017, with high sales of Teriyaki Stir-fry Udon, the number surpassed $ 10M for the first time and increased to $ 16M in 2018. By hitting shelves of more than 300 Costco stores in the U.S., Pulmuone sold $ 30M of fresh noodles in 2019, posting a 85% year-to-year sales growth.


Pulmuone is continuously expanding its product lineup with new items such as Korean Inspired Beef Udon, Knife-cut Asian Noodles, Pho Noodle Soup, Katsuo Udon, etc.


“As the U.S. Asian noodle market was focused on items of low-priced instant noodles, we chose to approach the market with premium fresh noodles to meet the consumer needs for quality Asian foods,” said Sujie Park, a Product Manager of Asian Category Marketing at Pulmuone USA Foods. “Pulmuone’s main products in the U.S. have been groceries such as tofu and kimchi so far, but we are aggressively expanding our lineup of convenience foods including fresh noodles.”


Pulmuone is the first fresh noodle maker of South Korea and has led the nation’s fresh noodle category with no.1 market share. Through consistent research and development, Pulmuone boasts world class manufacturing technology of fresh noodles for various foods including knife-cut noodle, udon, cold noodle, black bean sauce noodle, ramen, pho noodle, etc. Leveraging its knowledge and expertise, Pulmuone is actively operating in global markets including China where its fresh pasta noodles are gaining popularity among consumers in need of quality convenience foods.



About Pulmuone Co., Ltd.

Pulmuone, Korea’s leading company for wholesome foods, conducts business in a wide variety of areas, including functional foods, meal services, concession businesses, whole food distribution, mineral water, and fermented milk.


Pulmuone first entered overseas markets in 1991 by establishing a subsidiary in the U.S. Now with additional subsidiaries in China and Japan, and as an owner of U.S.’s #1 tofu brand Nasoya, the company is growing into a global enterprise.


About Pulmuone Foods USA.

Pulmuone Foods USA, a wholly-owned US subsidiary of Pulmuone, is the only tofu maker of South Korea to have manufacturing plants both in eastern and western parts of US and nationwide retail distribution channels. After acquiring the to US tofu brand Nasoya in 2016, Pulmuone Foods USA is providing tofu products to over 20,000 stores in US. Amid the growing global demand for plant-based protein food, Pulmuone Foods USA is leading the US tofu market with a 75 percent market share.


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