SEOUL, Nov. 25 (Korea Bizwire) — Despite China’s claim that the origin of kimchi is China, South Korean kimchi is dominating the tables of families around the world.
Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish made from salted and fermented vegetables, usually cabbage and radishes.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, South Korea’s kimchi shipments reached an all-time high of US$108.5 million in the first nine months of this year.
This figure is up 38.5 percent year on year and has already exceeded last year’s total ($105 million).
South Korea has also succeeded in diversifying its export markets.
Until 2012, Japan was the largest export market for South Korean kimchi with a whopping share of about 80 percent.
Today, however, the nation’s kimchi exports are sent to 82 countries around the world, including the U.S., Hong Kong and Australia, although Japan still has the largest share at around 50 percent.
“A record of salted vegetables was found in the Chinese ancient literature ‘The Book of Odes.’ Based on this record, China claims that the origin of salted vegetables is China,” an official at the World Kimchi Institute said.
“South Korea developed simple salted vegetables into the kimchi we know today, through the addition of various spices. Furthermore, South Korean kimchi is unique as a lactic acid fermentation food.”
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)