Health

These odd-shaped fruits in Japan are selling at heart-stopping price

TOKYO: A greengrocer in Japan is selling fruits on exorbitant rates and what makes the fruit price so excessive are their ‘odd-shaped’ look.

Established in 1834, ‘Sembikya’ is Japan’s oldest-running greengrocers.

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Although the price tag could be seen on a new car, it was a bargain compared to last year, when a box of two melons sold for US$20,670, the highest bid ever, reported the Wall Street Journal in a  blog.

The price of yubari melons varies depending on their size and class. One can go for more than US$100 in Tokyo’s department stores.

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According to CNN, cultivating these luxury fruits involves meticulous and labor-intensive practices. Although the way Japanese farmers grow these beauties is a secret, it was revealed that sometimes it takes 45 days to grow one strawberry and usually sell for 500,000 yen ($4,395) (0.423 million Pakistani rupee) each. The strawberries even have a special name –  Bijin-hime, which means “beautiful princess”.

One strawberry is $4,395.

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Sembikkya is most famous for its oddly shaped fruits, and has sold heart-shaped watermelons, grapes the size of ping pong balls and tennis ball-sized strawberries to its image-conscious customers for almost 200 years.

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The Yubari melons, which were carefully cultivated, are the epitome of a growing trend in the country – luxury fruit.

Cubic watermelon #crazyjapan #omotesando

A post shared by Cecilia Schena (@ceciliaske) on

These range from strawberries the size of tennis balls, to ruby roman grapes to geometric melons. Fruits are treated differently in Asian culture and in Japanese society especially.

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It is not only an important part of their diet, but, perhaps more importantly, fruit is considered a luxury item and plays an important and elaborate ritual part in Japan’s extensive gift-giving practices.

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The fruit also tastes far sweeter, which makes it a delicacy and a status symbol.

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One of the most popular items in-store at the moment are ‘Ruby Roman’ grapes, which grow to be as large as ping pong balls.

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The grapes, which first went on sale in 2008, were grown to fill a gap in the luxury gift-giving market, according to Ruby Roman spokesperson Hirano Keisuke.

Today, branches sell for around 100,000 Yen (£720) each, but the company only brings 2,400 bunches to market each year.


WATCH: Here’s how these fruits are cultivated

 

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