S. Korea rice consumption falls to record low

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South Korea's per-capita consumption of rice fell to a record low last year as more and more people chose different diets, Statistics Korea said Friday.

Consumption per person was 72.8 kilograms (160 pounds), a 1.6 percent decrease on the previous year. Over the past decade the figure dropped by 22 percent.

"As diet becomes more diversified and convenient, consumption of alternative products such as bread and instant noodles increased constantly," the statistical service said in a statement.

Diet and health issues were also cited as reasons for the decline.

Korea still eats more rice than some neighbouring Asian countries. Japan consumed 58.5 kilograms and Taiwan 48.1 kilograms in 2009, Statistics Korea said.

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