SEOUL, June 24 (Korea Bizwire) — South Koreans consumed 1.86 million tons of kimchi in 2019, a survey showed Thursday, with around 42 percent of households here making the traditional side dish at home.
Of the volume, the demand from households accounted for 1.06 million tons, while 800,000 tons were consumed at restaurants and schools, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
On-year comparisons were not provided in the data as it was the first time for the ministry to carry out the nationwide survey.
The estimate was based on a survey conducted on 430 kimchi manufacturers, 1,629 restaurants, 323 schools and 5,000 households.
Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish normally made of fermented cabbage, salt and hot peppers, and is eaten with almost all meals.
South Korea’s kimchi manufacturers also produced 1.6 trillion won (US$1.4 billion) worth of products in 2019 and employed 9,510 workers.
The combined amount of kimchi supplied in the country came to 1.9 million tons, including 306,000 tons that were imported.
Around 42 percent of South Korean households made their own kimchi, with the most popular ingredient being napa cabbage.
The data also showed that 58 percent of restaurants purchased packaged kimchi instead of making it.