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Japanese Soba noodles – the new “victim” of the conflict in Ukraine

Japanese Soba noodles are made from buckwheat, which is imported a lot from Russia. As a result, supply instability due to the conflict in Ukraine is causing Soba to lose its reputation as a cheap dish.

Mr. Ryu Ishihara (owner of Soba noodle shop in Tokyo, Japan) is about to raise the price of his inexpensive noodle dish. This will be the first time in nearly a decade he has had to do this. The reason is because of the escalating costs due to the war Russia-Ukraine conflict limited the supply of buckwheat to make Japanese specialty Soba noodles.

It’s really tough for sellers like Mr. Ishihara.

Mr. Ryu Ishihara said: “From COVID-19 to now this conflict, I don’t know when it will all end. I’m so worried“.

Japanese Soba noodles - new victims of conflict in Ukraine - Photo 1.

Diners at a Soba noodle shop in Japan. (Photo: Reuters)

Soba noodles are famous in Japan as a cheap dish, which can be eaten cold or hot. Employees and students often eat this dish because it is affordable and can be finished very quickly. This noodle dish is also known for being healthy because it is low in calories and rich in vitamins and minerals.

A bowl of Soba noodles at Mr. Ishihara’s restaurant costs from 290 Yen (about 51,000 VND) to 500 Yen (equivalent to 88,000 VND), if you eat more tempura fried food or rice, you have to pay more.

Prior to war in Ukraine, Russia is the largest supplier of buckwheat to Japan. When the Russia-Ukraine conflict broke out, shipping was restricted, the yen depreciated, the Russian banking system was embargoed, all of which made it suddenly difficult for Japanese companies to buy buckwheat from Japan. Russia. The price of Russian buckwheat has increased by 30%.

However, fortunately for Mr. Ishihara, loyal customers do not see the price increase as an issue, as long as it remains at an acceptable level.

“Depends on how often I eat, but I hope the price will stop around 500 yen,” said Keidai Fukuhara, a customer.

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