Kanoya Probiotic Udon

Kanoya is a Gunma Prefecture based food company (founded 1885) which produces fresh (uncooked) noodles for use in the home. Unlike cup noodles which are now popular world-wide, prepared, uncooked noodles like this that require refrigerated shipping and have a relatively short shelf-life are the only way to prepare specialty noodle shop quality noodles at home. These are very popular in Japan, but not so much outside Japan due to logistical reasons.

However, this product drew my attention due to the functional food angle it is taking. They are adding a probiotic to udon noodles, so the proposition is great taste plus health. They have chosen Enterococcus faecalis bacteria due to its heat resistant properties, which makes sense because obviously noodles have to be boiled. It is also notable that they have added this to the noodle variety which requires the least boiling time, the Furusato Mizusawa brand ふる里水沢.

They promise a 40 trillion bacterial count per serving size, or 80 trillion per two serving package. I am assuming this is prior to preparation, because this is bound to decrease after boiling. They do not make a health claim on the package, but they do obliquely mention immune function on the website and point to an outside scientific website in Japanese set up to explain Enterococcus faecaliswhich features one of the world's most renowned scientists in this area - Prof. Tomotari Mitsuoka 光岡知足教授.

Overall, very interesting and I am eager to see if this approach works. I do have a small quibble. This site and many others use the term Lactic Acid Bacteria 乳酸菌 to refer to Enterococcus faecalis フェカリス菌 which is not technically correct. However, products including Bifidobacteria ビフィズス菌 do the same thing due to the high recognition value of "Lactic Acid Bacteria".

Photo is a web capture for explanatory purposes, copyright belongs to the company.