Japan Melons Fetch $12,500 at Auction

People in Japan take their fruit very seriously so when a pair of melons sold for $12,500, residents were amazed at the deal the unknown buyer got.

A box set of two Yubari melons was recently sold at an auction in Japan for one million yen or roughly $12,500, according to AFP.

While some may say that is absurd, the price was actually less than half of the all-time record paid for those types of melons.

An unidentified buyer bid on the Yubari melons on the first day of the buying season to make sure he was able to savor this highly sought after fruit.

The Japanese are used to living in a country with ridiculously high fruit prices. People at the local market can expect to pay more than $5 (USD) for an apple and over a $100 dollars (USD) for a presentation pack of 20 cherries.

The melons, which are a relative of the cantaloupe, are used to fetching high prices. The town that produces them has to sell as many as they can given that the town of Yubari went bankrupt in 2006 after the coal mine which supported the community shut down.

The fruit, which is sold at the Sapporo Central Wholesale Market in Hokkaido, also brings a level of prestige for the buyer while also financially helping the town.

Top notch Yubari melons are perfect spheres with a smooth, evenly patterned rind. Their taste is unmatched and a T-shaped stalk is left on the fruit for esthetic appeal. It is usually sold in an ornate box.

The record for a pair of Yubari was sent in 2008 when they sold for 2.5 million yen or more than $25,000.

It is believed that the high volcanic ash content of the soil in Yubari allows for growing the most exquisite melons in the world. Yubari melon farmers cannot sell their melons to people directly. All of the melons go through the Japanese Agriculture Association for grading.