Rice's status as Korea's no.1 food is slipping. Long the top selling item in large supermarkets, rice was outsold this year by instant coffee and instant noodles, Shinsegae's E-Mart said on Sunday.
The supermarket chain's analysis of sales of 2,874 product categories in 126 stores nationwide between January and November showed that instant coffee jumped from third place last year to first this year.
Rice fell from the top spot to third due to increasing consumption of alternative staples like bread and instant noodles and the growing dining-out culture. Instant noodles remained in second place for a second consecutive year.
Due to the declining birth rate, demand for baby food and powdered baby formula dropped from 9th last year to 11th this year.