Natto Surges in Popularity

By - Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Soyfoods provide consumers with an array of culinary choices chock full of protein and flavor.

Natto is a traditional Japanese food made from fermented soybeans. Fermentation breaks down the proteins in the soybean, making it easier to digest than whole soybeans. Natto is often eaten for breakfast and is popular in Japan for its health benefits. Natto soybeans are small, with a clear hilum and thin seed coat.

A recent piece in The Japan Times highlights how natto’s popularity has created a recent surge in demand during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to a recent observational BMJ study that shows fermented soy products may reduce the risk of premature death[1], natto and other soyfoods are shelf-stable, making them a good choice during uncertain times.[2]

Japan imports about 75 percent of its annual natto-soybean needs from the United States.[3] Increased natto demand may ultimately result in increased demand for U.S. Soy.

To read the article in The Japan Times about the surge in demand for natto, please click here.

[1] https://ussoy.org/fermented-soy-associated-with-lower-mortality-risk-according-to-study/

[2] https://ussoy.org/u-s-soy-provides-shelf-stable-protein-for-the-world-in-uncertain-times/

[3] . https://ussoy.org/natto-buyers-distributors-and-producers-meet-in-fargo-for-annual-u-s-japan-natto-summit/