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October 25, 2017

Love noodles? Hate the sound of slurping? You need the Otohiko noise-cancelling fork!

Do the Japanese have an equivalent of April Fool’s Day? Is it around this time of year?

We only ask because the noodle manufacturers Nissin have apparently developed a fork which cancels out the sound of noodles being slurped.

It’s called the Otohiko and is billed as a ‘noodle-sipping sound camouflage function carrying fork’.

Slurp no more with your trusty Otohiko.

Ramen aficionados swear that the best way to enjoy their favourite dish is to inhale air through your mouth while sucking up the noodles.

It’s the same idea as wine tasting.

Noodle harassment

The problem is that the accompanying slurping noise is one which many people find impolite or even gross.

Or rather, the accompanying slurping noise is one which many Westerners find unpalatable.

It is sometimes referred to as ‘noodle harassment’. Apparently, this is a growing problem.

In much of East Asia, slurping is perfectly acceptable. Desirable even. It shows that you are so keen to eat the ramen that you can’t wait for them to cool.

Cultural difference

It is just a cultural difference.

But one which Nissin seem eager to conquer.

If their ad is to be believed, the Otohiko fork has a microphone which can detect and isolate slurping noises.

Having detected a rogue slurp, it then sends a signal to your mobile which emits a noise specially tailored to the sound of your slurp.

The slurping is covered up. No-one is embarrassed and cultural harmony is maintained.

And at a mere 14,800 JPY, roughly £100, it seems a, er, genuine bargain.

Nissin promises to manufacture the fork if they receive 5000 orders for it.

To be honest, there would need to be some supersonic slurping going on before we would fork out £100 to cancel it but horses for courses and all that.

Book a ramen restaurant with 5pm Dining

Whether you choose to slurp or not to slurp, 5pm Dining has many restaurants that serve a mighty fine bowl of noodles.

You can browse and book them here.