Friday, October 04, 2013

30 Things You Should Know and/or Will Love about Japan Series: # 16

#16: Precious Fruit
Individually packaged apples about $2.00 USD each

Fruit is usually very expensive in Japan.  You can usually only buy fruit seasonally, with a few things coming from other countries in SE Asia, like bananas and pineapples.   Fruit is frequently packaged individually, usually in a soft cushiony "foam cradle" (as seen below).

We often get tired of the fruits in Japan, but in the first few weeks of every season, it's exciting to see new fruit arrive at the grocery store.  It usually starts at a REALLY high price and then moves to a moderate price (one I would have scoffed at before living in Japan).

Apple and Persimmon
Luckily, most of the fruit that is sold is of very high quality.  So, when you do spent a lot of money on them, you rarely have to throw out a piece of bad fruit.

Right now, the figs are starting to wane at the store, but apples, Asian pears, persimmon and mikon (mandarin oranges) are in full season.

Besides the normal market/grocery store fruit, there is also "gift fruit".  This is the really high end stuff.   Here is more information on this topic from Sembikiya (which specializes gift fruit in Japan) and a Western article about the same topic: Inside Japan's Most Insanely Expensive Fruit Parlor.

Cantaloupe - about $30 USD each.

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