Samyang Buldak spicy noodles not being recalled in New Zealand, despite Denmark ban

June 28, 2024

Spicy noodle enthusiasts in New Zealand can continue enjoying their favorite fiery flavors, as Samyang’s Buldak ‘hot chicken’ noodles will not be recalled in the country. This decision comes despite a recent and highly publicized recall in Denmark.

The Denmark Recall: Earlier this month, Denmark’s Veterinary and Food Administration recalled three varieties of Samyang’s Buldak instant noodles, citing dangerously high levels of capsaicin. The recalled flavors included Buldak 3x Spicy Hot Chicken, Buldak 2x Spicy Hot Chicken, and Buldak Hot Chicken Stew. The Danish regulator expressed particular concern for the safety of children and the elderly, noting the potential for capsaicin to be poisonous at high levels.

New Zealand’s Stance: However, New Zealand Food Safety (NZFS) has determined that no such recall is necessary in New Zealand. In a statement issued on Wednesday, NZFS deputy director-general Vincent Arbuckle explained that a risk assessment had been conducted, and it was concluded that the products, while high in capsaicin, do not pose a significant safety risk to the general public. The products are clearly labeled to indicate their spiciness, and there have been no complaints or adverse reactions reported in New Zealand.

Arbuckle noted, “While the products may present a risk to frail elderly people and young children, these groups are not the intended consumers. Should consumers experience discomfort, they will naturally stop eating the product. As always, if we consider there to be a food safety risk, we will take swift action, including recalling the product for public safety. We do not consider that there is a food safety or suitability risk in this case.”

Samyang’s Buldak noodles have been a global hit since their launch in 2012, largely due to the viral ‘Fire Noodle Challenge’ on social media, where participants attempt to finish an entire serving of the extra spicy noodles. Despite the recall in Denmark, Samyang insists that the product’s spiciness, not a quality issue, is the reason for the recall.

Instant noodles, originally from Japan, have become a staple across Asia, with Samyang producing South Korea’s first instant ramen in 1963. The Buldak variety was inspired by a spicy stir fry and developed by Samyang’s chief executive, Kim Jung-soo.

In conclusion, New Zealand consumers can continue to enjoy Samyang’s Buldak noodles, assured by NZFS’s stance that these products are safe when consumed as intended.

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