Putting a stop to the decline of rice flour consumption
”Umm… This is a texture that I haven’t tasted before,” said Nakata as he concentrated on his eating. Nakata was tasting noodles made of rice flour produced by Gunma Flour Milling, called ”J-Men.” or ”J-Noodles”.
Gunma Flour Milling Co., Ltd was founded in 1947. They specialize in milling rice to make ”monaka (Japanese style waffles)”, flour and glutinous rice. Rice flour has been used for making Japanese sweets, but the change in people’s diet in recent years resulted in a decline for rice flour demand.
Huge potential for rice flour products
Keiichi Yamaguchi, now the third president, was still an employee of the company when the first president at the time requested the staff to develop a new rice flour product that matched the modern diet of the Japanese.
So Keiichi, together with Hironobu Tsujiguchi who is a pastry chef and owner of ”Mont St. Clair,” started to develop rice flour that can be used for making Western sweets. They came up with a new type of rice flour called ”Riz Farine.” Its particles are double the size of normal flour, making it an innovative rice flour that could replace wheat flour to make breads and cakes. The rice flour sparked a revolution in the cake and confectionery industry.
After continuing research and studies about rice flour, the company came up with a noodle product – ”J-Men” which Nakata enjoyed tasting. The product is more chewy than the ordinary hand-made pasta, and is highly popular in Gunma. The company is starting to now expand sales channels to restaurants, supermarkets and department stores.
”J-Men” can be a replacement for udon, ramen and pasta. It also becomes a tasty dessert when served with coconut milk. There are many ways to enjoy ”J-Men”. No wonder it inspired Nakata’s ideas.
Rice noodles made in Japan, the land of rice.
- Gunma Flour Milling Co., Ltd.
- Shibukawa-shi Shibukawa 1183, Gunma
- URL http://www.5783.jp/