Cup Noodles, known for its easy-to-make instant ramen served in its iconic branded cups, is making some major changes next year.

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Beginning in 2024, the company will officially shift toward a new cup made from paper, phasing out polystyrene — often referred to by the trademarked name Styrofoam.

The change is historic, says Nissin Foods USA, the parent company of Cup Noodles.

“While Cup Noodles will continue to have that same satisfying taste and iconic look, we continue to find ways to evolve the brand to support the current needs of our consumers, the environment and the world,” said Michael Price, President and CEO of Nissin Foods USA. “This updated packaging and the new paper cup marks an important milestone for Cup Noodles and a key step in our environmental commitment.”

Cup Noodles will soon be sold in a paper cup made with recycled material and able to be microwaved. (Nissin Foods)
Cup Noodles will soon be sold in a paper cup made with recycled material and able to be microwaved. (Nissin Foods)

The switch to paper is part of the company’s goals to be more earth-conscious and sustainable. Nissin Foods says it plans to minimize its CO2 emissions by 30% by 2030 and reach carbon neutrality by 2050.

The new cups will be made from 40% recycled fiber and the sleeve will be made from 100% recycled paper. The individual cups will no longer require a plastic wrap and, with the removal of polystyrene, the entire company portfolio will be plastic-free, Nissin says.

With the packaging change also comes a new way to enjoy the self-contained meal enjoyed by people on the go and students on a budget. Thanks to the paper cup, Cup Noodles can now be safely heated up in the microwave — although, you probably ignored the warnings and did that from time to time, anyways.

“This allows consumers an even more convenient way to enjoy and cook their favorite instant ramen,” Nissin Foods said in a news release. “Easily heated in 2 minutes and 15 seconds, the new packaging delivers a reliable, hassle-free meal option.”

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The food company said you can expect to start seeing the new cups on store shelves in early 2024.