November 2002 (v5 i3)
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Munchun Announces Improved Ramen Noodles
'Souped up' flavor is 'totally buggin'
by Todd Mein, Staff Writer

Munchun once again changes the face of
12-cent meals with their most recent ramen

[photos: Todd Mein, Todd Nienkerk]
AUSTIN, TX — When a new product hits the grocery store shelf, specifically a new flavor of Munchun's Instant Ramen Noodles, people eat it up. Literally.

Hours into the night, diligent nocturnal employees of H-E-B sweat under their arms and stock the shelves for the next day's throng of consumers. From their carts, they unload products ranging from 'traditional' to 'new and improved.' Last Wednesday in particular, midnight stocker Buck Benson unloaded boxes of Munchun's new flavor of ramen noodles: bugs.

"'Each and every person counts.' That's our motto here at H-E-B," said Benson. "I've never been too good at math, but I see where they're coming from. And I don't know too much about bugs either, but if H-E-B carries it and Munchun makes it, you'd better believe I'll snarf that stuff down like there won't be a tomorrow."

Benson is not the only employee of H-E-B excited about the new flavor of the ready-to-make soup in a Styrofoam cup.

"My prediction," said Gary Johns, late night manager of H-E-B #4718, "is you won't be able to stop the commotion tomorrow. College kids love ramen noodles as much as they love sexing each other up, plain and simple, and we typically sell new flavors off like hot porn-cakes."

Munchun's seasonal rotation of flavors has contributed to its cult status. "Me and my friends have been waiting for the new soup to come out ever since they discontinued that last one. The french fry and buffalo wings flavor was amazing," commented Engineering junior Brad Painter as he stocked his cart with two 12-packs of bug soup. "The bugs are supposed to be nutritious, not to mention delectable. That's the rumor, anyway."

The Japan-headquartered Munchun Company prides itself on their distribution of ambi-purpose noodles, which serve either as a hot snack or a delicious meal that people can enjoy anytime.

"Our multi-flavored ramen noodles are dehydrated to perfection with the freshest peas, carrot cubes, and corn kernels. We predict our new flavor, which includes real juicy insects, will outsell all of our current flavors we've put out to date, including the all-too conventional beef, chicken, and our most popular flavor, shrimp," said Munchun spokesperson, Haruki Fujimaki. "Our company needed a drastic marketing change. That's why we decided to sell new, nontraditional, healthy products to appeal to stupid…I mean, nontraditional, health-conscious Americans. It's all healthy, though. That's the best part!"

Munchun, self-proclaimed maker of "America's Finest Ramen Noodle Soups," completed their first in a series of new, fast and tasty ramen flavors that will grace store shelves in months to come. Also among these up-and-coming flavors are mouse, pea-pea/poo-poo, frumunda cheese, and the much-anticipated lung chunk.

"All of our flavors use the best ingredients. The bugs for instance, especially high in protein, are selected from the choicest variety of ants, cockroaches, houseflies, and other miscellaneous insects. I can't wait to see the results of our other new nontraditional products," said Fujimaki. "Last year sales went down big time when we introduced our American Favorites: ramen, including flavors like Hot Dog, Taco meat, sardine, bacon, and ketchup. But this year we're expecting a home run from every corner. That's a bunch of home runs. Go USA!"

In the end, the decision lies with the consumer.

Having made his way through the checkout line, Brad Painter hoisted his boxes of ramen triumphantly in the air. "I'm going home a hero," he said. "Waiter, there's some bugs in my soup, and they look way yummy."
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