The ongoing financial impact of the novel coronavirus is being felt in nearly all industries in Japan, and farming is no exception.
Ando Farm 安藤農園 in Saitama Prefecture usually does a brisk business with its picking farm, where visitors can enjoy their perfectly ripe, ready-to-pick, and, of course, sweet and delicious strawberries. Some of their varieties are only available locally and cannot be enjoyed without making a trip to Saitama Prefecture.
However, due to the pandemic, they were forced to suspend operations of their picking farm for the entire month of January. Whereas visitors can always reschedule, the same can't be said of the strawberries which were grown to be ripe and ready for picking when the visitors arrived.
Faced with the grim prospect of seeing their precious berries go to waste, they teamed up with Shokubunka Co Ltd, a company dedicated to eliminating food loss by offering local farmers a means of offering their produce online. Their online service, which connects customers with farmers through the Toyosu Market in Tokyo, is called Toyosu Ichiba.com
If you live in Japan, you can now take advantage of this special offer and have a carefully-packed box of 15 of the ripest, sweetest, and most fragrant of their strawberries delivered to your home.
The three berry varieties are:
あきひめ（章姫）Akihime (red princess)
Large berries with soft flesh and almost melt in your mouth, they are juicy, have very little acidity and are blessed with an excellent fragrance.
紅ほっぺ Beni Hoppe (red cheeks)
A locally popular variety with moderate acidity, but with high sugar content when ripe, giving it a fragrant and rich taste.
An original variety from Saitama Prefecture that was just registered in 2016. It has a round and glossy appearance, and the flesh is firm, with little acidity and high sugar content.
You can order from one set and up to ten sets. Each set contains five of the best berries of each of these three varieties. Each set costs 3,280 yen (incl. tax).
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