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Nissin Foods Founder Dead At 96; Invented Instant Noodles January 6, 2007

Posted by notapundit in World News.
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TOKYO (AP)–Momofuku Ando, the Japanese inventor of instant noodles, has died, according to Nissin Food Products Co. (2897.TO), the company he founded. He was 96.

Ando died of a heart attack on Friday, Nissin said in a statement posted Saturday on its corporate Web site.

He was born in Taiwan in 1910, when the island was under Japanese colonial rule. He moved to Japan in 1933, according to Japan’s daily Mainichi newspaper.

Faced with food shortages in post World War II Japan, Ando developed the idea that a quality, convenient noodle product would help feed the masses. He founded Nissin in 1948.

In 1958, “Chicken Ramen,” the first instant noodle product, was introduced after many trials. Following its success, the company continued to add innovative products, including “Cup Noodle” in 1971.

“The Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum” opened in 1999 in Ikeda City in western Japan commemorating his inventions.

The company’s products even went into space when Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi took instant noodles in a pouch called “Space Ram” on his 2005 mission on board the U.S. space shuttle Discovery.

Ando was a keen promoter of developing food for space travel, Nissin said.

Ando gave a 30-minute speech at the company’s New Year ceremony and enjoyed Chicken Ramen for lunch with Nissin employees on Thursday before falling ill, Japan’s largest daily Yomiuri said.

Ando is survived by his wife Masako, two sons and a daughter.

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