Blog — journey

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We Tasted 100+ Ingredients at North America's Largest Ingredient Tradeshow

Last week, KChan and I went back to Las Vegas ✈️ to attend Supply Side West. This time, the event was held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center so we got to change up the scenery!Similar to Pack Expo, Supply Side West is one of the largest ingredient 🌱 tradeshows in North America with 1,300 exhibitors, 20,000 attendees, and 10,000+ of the latest and most innovative ingredients in the market.KChan and I came into the food industry from outsider tech & software backgrounds. We historically haven't found most conferences or expos in the tech industry to be a productive use of time 🤔. However, we’ve learned that in the food industry, it's critical to attend these tradeshows to build in-person relationships 🤝 with supplier vendors and discover novel ingredients. Much like how an engineer might study new programming languages or frameworks👩‍💻, or how a doctor or nutritionist might study the latest scientific research👩‍⚕️, KChan and I always want to be aware of the best and most innovative ingredients in the market.In the food industry, suppliers and farmers create and breed ingredients to enable distinct functional capabilities. This leads to unique ingredients that could be better for blending, emulsification or constriction...

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What We Learned at the World's Largest Packaging Trade Show

A few weeks ago, KCan and I had a chance to attend Pack Expo at the Las Vegas Convention Center.Pack Expo International is the world's largest packaging 📦 trade show!This local Vegas version had 30,000 attendees with 2,000 exhibitors in the 900,000 net sq. ft. convention center 😲. Our goal for attending was to check out all of the latest packaging options and materials available and meet printing vendors who might be viable partners to work with for our final product packaging.This was our first Pack Expo, so we walked in with eyes wide open, curious to learn as much as we could and not afraid to ask dumb questions 🙋‍♂️. We learned a massive amount over two days of talking to dozens of different vendors and understanding what opportunities and constraints existed for the types of packaging we were considering using. For example, one goal is to continuously push for sustainable and recyclable 🌎 packaging.However, we’ve learned that some types of compostable 🌱 packaging won't even outlast our immi ramen or our seasoning when it comes to shelf life.This is a no-no 🙅‍♂️ for us as food safety & stability is absolutely critical in our pursuit of product excellence.Other...

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We Found the Perfect Branding Partner for immi

Even though we know some of you will be sad 🙃 to hear this, the current immi ramen packaging on the home page was always meant to be temporary!As many of you may remember from our post about our company values from a while back, two of our values are "quality above all" and "not afraid to do things differently."This means that KChan and I strive to be extremely deliberate about everything that goes into our company's products. We thoughtfully source the highest quality ingredients and examine every single design detail 🧐 that goes into immi's branding and packaging. The Search We spent a long time scouring the corners of the web 🕵️‍♀️ to find the best partner who could help bring the branding, design, and packaging for immi to life.With immi and our first ramen 🍜 product, we're doing something that no one else has done before. We wanted to find a partner who cared just as much as we did about quality in their work and who wasn't afraid to push the boundaries of design. After a long search, we're excited to announce that we've finally found the one 🥰.Over the next few months, we'll be working closely with one of the world's best branding...

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Why We Participated in a Ramen Blind Tasting Test with 80+ Strangers

While food is science, taste is subjective. Most of you judge food within milliseconds of putting it in your mouth.  Signals from your tongue nerves fire to your brain and the reaction determines whether you become a loyal fan or never try that food again. The Problem with Taste When we were testing various formulations, one of the frustrating problems we encountered was an inability to know if our latest formula objectively tasted good. We've eaten a LOT of instant ramen in our lives and we'd like to think that we have high standards for noodles. But as creators of our product, we're always going to be emotionally biased.  We know our low-carb and keto-friendly ramen is the first of its kind. We know they're made with significantly more nutritious ingredients. And we love eating immi every single day. But does that mean other people will love immi? Crave immi? Scream #gimmeimmi from their rooftops? The Delusion Trap Before immi, KChan and I spent the past combined 15 years building consumer products across various industries. We know how it easy it is to delude yourself into thinking that a product you have poured your heart into will be loved by others in the same way. The food industry is no different. When you've spent close to two years experimenting and...

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The CEO of a Massive Japanese Food Conglomerate Tastes Our Ramen

An Unexpected Message A few months ago, we received an unexpected text message in the late afternoon. The text came from KLee's friend - we'll call him H to protect his identity - who used to be a food entrepreneur in Japan and now runs a food company in the U.S.H said that his friend, Kohey, was visiting town and was looking to meet with young food companies and entrepreneurs. Kohey would only be in town for the next morning before returning back to Japan.We always trust H's referrals, so we accepted the introduction request without much hesitation and scheduled a meeting with Kohey for the next morning. But to be 100% honest, KChan and I knew nothing about Kohey and we weren't sure what to expect 🤷‍♂️.We went about our day and later that night, we decided it was probably best to do some last minute research 🧐 to prep for our meeting.Needless to say, we were completely mind blown 🤯 with what we found out.....  Who Is This Guy? It turns out that Kohey is the Co-Founder and CEO of the publicly traded Japanese conglomerate, Oisix. Oisix is the first and largest Internet-based food retailer and organic vegetable delivery company in Japan 🇯🇵 with 6...

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How Two Friends with No Experience Reimagined Instant Ramen

“So did you two work in kitchens as cooks?” “Have you two been to culinary school?” “Did you grow up making noodles with your families?”“How are you going to make instant ramen? You know nothing about this industry.” ...Thanks mom and dad. We know 🤣. In the past year and half of building immi, strangers, friends, and family barraged us with these types of questions. It Always Starts with a Dream We’ve grown up eating noodles our entire lives. As Taiwanese and Thai/Chinese Americans, we've eaten almost every kind of noodle under the sun. KChan grew up eating at his grandmother’s egg noodle hawker stall in Thailand. KLee grew up eating noodle soup for breakfast at his grandparent’s rose apple farm in Taiwan.Instant ramen was the first meal our parents made for us, and the first meal we learned to make ourselves.Our dream was to re-invent instant ramen to be nutritious and still taste as delicious as we remembered.Unfortunately, we had no experience making noodles.This is a story about how two friends with no professional background in the food industry reimagined instant ramen.   One of the last vacations we took to the Teotihuacan Pyramids in Mexico before starting immi   The...

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What immi Stands For

Going through a vision board exercise to depict and frame our values   In the early days of building immi, the most important thing we did was decide what we stand for. Today, we wanted to share our mission and values with you. immi's mission is to enrich lives through food. Enrich Health Our families were following unhealthy diets with the food they loved. As they got older, harmful effects appeared in the form of diabetes, high blood pressure, stomach cancer, and more.  Together, we convinced our families to change their eating habits and start eating healthier.  With immi, we're reimagining our favorite Asian American foods with added nutritional benefits and high quality ingredients to enrich health everywhere. Enrich Perspectives We started out seeing the world differently as third culture kids straddling immigrant and American cultures. We believe that experiencing cultures through other cuisines encourages people to travel more, try new experiences, and enrich perspectives.   Our Values Quality above all: We will always create foods that are the best tasting and best for your health. We promise to be your trusted partner and will never sacrifice on quality. Nourishment is for everyone: We believe that nourishment is a basic human right. We seek to make nourishing food available to everyone. Redefine the standard:...

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Introducing immi

Hey Friend!  We're the Kevins - Kevin Lee and Kevin Chanthasiriphan - or KLee and KChan for short 👋 ! We've been close friends for the past 8 years as ex-roommates and ex-co workers and we live about 10 minutes away from each other in San Francisco. Ever since starting immi, we've been lucky to get to work together every single day. While others might consider this work, we’re having a ton of fun because we're loving every single minute of this journey!   Grabbing hot pot with one of our chef advisors.   We wanted to take the time today to tell you more about our backgrounds and explain why we're building immi. We were both lucky to grow up in food families. KLee is Taiwanese and his grandparents are rose apple (a bell-shaped fruit originating in Southeast Asia) farmers in Taiwan. He spent most of his childhood split between the U.S. and Taiwan: running around in his grandparents fields sneaking juicy bites of the Asian fruit while helping them harvest and package those rose apples to be sold at markets.  After the days of hard work harvesting the fruit, he’d go with his family to the nearby night markets...

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