So how much kimchi do Koreans consume? On the dining table of a typical Korean family, kimchi has its own reserved parking spot as most people eat it with every meal, and doubling down on the dosage is observed quite often. For example, putting kimchi on top of a spoonful of kimchi bokkeumbap 김치볶음밥 (fried rice) which already has kimchi as the main ingredient is a very common practice (think of dipping a chocolate ice cream bar in chocolate syrup).
According to statistics released in 2013, an average South Korean consumes about 48 pounds (22 kg) of kimchi annually. And for comparison, the large weight plate at the gym weighs 3 pounds less at 45 pounds. The twist here is that the number actually reflects a declining trend in kimchi consumption, mainly due to a change in their eating habits. As Korean people become more and more health-conscious, the importance of adopting a low-sodium diet into their lifestyle has been a new trend, and naturally, people started to cut down on kimchi consumption, a high-sodium food.
More, young people whose taste buds are well used to the Western food no longer see kimchi as their BFF (Best Friends Forever). But again, that doesn’t mean kimchi will lose the throne – Koreans will always stay attached to kimchi, both physically and mentally. Case in point, many Koreans, even the younger generations who have been traveling overseas for an extended period of time without eating Korean food, will find this mysterious “kimchi craving” forming from within them, which urges them to look for the nearest Korean restaurant. At this point, then, you must be wondering how Koreans tame their “kimchi craving” when they are away from home, especially in places with no Korean restaurants? Well, they pretty much take it everywhere with them, including SPACE!
Never Tried Kimchi Before? Try Mother In Law’s Kimchi!