X

Japan’s Square Watermelons – Nice to Look at But Hard to Swallow

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade or so, you’ve probably seen pictures of Japan’s square watermelons doing the rounds online. I know I have, but what I never knew was that these weird-looking fruit are basically inedible.

Perfectly sized and shaped fruits are big business in Japan, and it’s not uncommon for the rarest and most coveted varieties to sell for thousands of dollars a piece. Back in 2016, a supermarket owner made international news headlines after paying $11,000 for a bunch of Ruby Rose grapes, the world’s most expensive grape variety. But it’s not just grapes, specialty fruit shops charge hundreds, even thousands of dollars for fruits of all types, which may seem strange, but it is closely tied to Japanese culture. Rare and expensive fruits are traditionally offered as gifts to clients, business partners or relatives, and people will gladly spend a small fortune on a single fruit just to show their respect for someone. But while most of these expensive fruits can be savored by the recipient, there is one that has a purely decorative purpose – square watermelons.

Read More »