SDF Cup Noodle Helps Japan's Army Fight Hunger

From C-rations to MREs, the U.S. Army's food has come a long way. Then there's Japan, whose army enjoys specially formulated and distinctively packaged versions of that old student standby, Cup Noodle instant ramen.

They say an army travels on its stomach, and if that's the case Japan's SDF (Self Defense Forces) travel, well, like nerds. Not that that's a bad thing, what with today's emphasis on cyberwar and all. Still, “SDF Cup Noodle”? I don't know whether to be shocked or awed.

One wonders why Japan's military establishment saw fit to customize standard Cup Noodle instant ramen for distribution to their servicemen and women. The white styrofoam container isn't subdued or camouflaged in any way, and the ingredients within have been adjusted only slightly.

For example, the SDF Cup Noodle weighs in at 73 grams, provides 352 Kcal of energy and contains 8.8 grams of protein. The corresponding figures for standard Cup Noodle instant ramen are 77 grams, 364 Kcal and 10.1 grams.

Looking inside both versions of Cup Noodle, it appears that the military is getting short-changed on the size and number of shrimp. Now why would that be? Only Japan's Defense Ministry and Nissin, maker of both the SDF and standard versions of Cup Noodle, know for sure.

At present, SDF Cup Noodle comes in Soy Sauce and Seafood flavors though rumor has it more flavors are on the way. At least the Army isn't branding it's own hot water with which to rehydrate them. (via Japan Security Watch and Training Ration)