With the opening of the Japanese noodle chain, Ippudo, in Westfield Newmarket, New Zealand is set to become the 16th country to receive one of the fastest-growing restaurant chains. Over the next two years, Ippudo plans to open another two stores in New Zealand, to add to their already 100-strong store count worldwide.

“We serve more than 2000 bowls of ramen every single day across the ditch, and we expect this unique concept to take off just as positively here in New Zealand,” said Ben Cheong, Ippudo spokesperson. “We will be sourcing all our fresh products from local suppliers, and this includes everything from meat, seafood, vegetables, fruits and many other base raw ingredients.”

Considering Ippudo’s running success, plenty of opportunity arises for local suppliers to get on board with a globally recognised chain.

“Japanese food and brands have been consistently regarded as the epitome of quality and authenticity amongst Asian countries in the eye of the global market.”

Ippudo serves Hakata-style ramen, characterised by pork bone broth and thin noodles. Combined with Ippudo’s unparalleled commitment to customer service, the restaurant chain has been well received around the globe.

“While we’ve seen that Kiwis have had a taste for Japanese food for a while, we think they are ready to experience another one of Japan’s staples, ramen. Sushi is popular, but historically it was for wealthy people only. Ramen was, and still is today, the staple diet for the Japanese,” Cheong said.