When we wrote about the $22 strawberries being sold in Hong Kong for Valentine’s day, we were impressed. The handpicked berries had been imported from Japan, so really, we should have expected the country to be the home of some of the world’d priciest fruit.
“Fruits are treated differently in Asian culture and in Japanese society especially,” Soyeon Shim, dean of the School of Human Ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, told CNN. “Fruit is considered a luxury item and plays an important and elaborate ritual part in Japan’s extensive gift-giving practices.”
Okuda Nichio’s prized tennis-ball sized Bijin-hime strawberries are a perfect example. One of the 500 “scoop shaped” fruits he grows each year can sell for $4,395. Likewise, a bunch of Ruby Roman grapes — of which 2,400 bunches are grown each year — will sell for around $880.
And in 2016, a pair of Hokkaido cantaloupe sold for a record $27,240.
While the fruit is certainly a feast for the eyes, we wonder if it tastes as good as it looks.