A single watermelon has sold for more than £2,000 in a start-of-the-season auction in northern Japan.
The winning watermelon, grown in the town of Toma in Japan's northernmost Hokkaido island, was bought at a market auction for £2,045 (Y350,000).
The fruit was the highest selling among a batch of around 240 Densuke watermelons, a variety famous for their circular form, distinct black rind and crisp, sweet flesh.
This year's price tag marked a £292 (Y50,000) increase compared to the most expensive watermelon sold at the same market last year.
However, despite the eye-watering cost, it is not the most expensive on record, with that accolade held by a watermelon sold at auction for £3,799 (Y650,000) in 2008.
Japan’s passion for perfectly formed fruit is probably unique but these melon prices are also a sign of increasing confidence. Fruit prices were also strong in 2008 before Junichiro Koizumi’s tentative economic recovery was torpedoed by the West’s credit crisis.Back to top