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Grapes fetch record Y550,000 a bunch

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Ridiculous.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

It's good because even farmers can be rich. Nobody forces anyone to buy expensive fruits but there is always someone with enough money to be a customer.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Sorry, but they are only 'top notch' because the growers sold them at such an expensive rate. What else makes them top notch? I bet you could tell the bride and groom they are eating 1 million yen grapes, that are actually just 500 yen, and they'd say it is the best thing in the world. You see time and again with taste tests that people actually can't tell the difference most of the time between this 100,000 yen grapes and 500 yen grapes from the local supermarket. When you're TOLD it's expensive, you believe it must therefore be more delicious, which is moronic. For that much money the couple could have been flown anywhere in the world, first class even, and been given the same grapes for free or bought just as good a quality of grapes for about $10.

3 ( +14 / -11 )

You know you have too much money when you pay $180+ for a single grape.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Japanese often present top-quality fruits such as melons as gifts. The first batches of carefully grown fruit often fetch extraordinary prices, making headlines in newspapers.

exactly, making headlines in newspapers is very significant in this shrinking economy.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Another clear sign that the wealth divide is growing wider under the neoliberal global economic system, that overly rewards a few whose depth of desire and greed knows no limit.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Sorry, but they are only 'top notch' because the growers sold them at such an expensive rate.

They were sold at auction. The growers didn't set the price. The buyers did.

What else makes them top notch?

Taste, shape, color, and the reputation of the grower.

Really, the main idea is behind what you wrote is that grapes shouldn't cost that much, and I'd have to agree, keeping in mind that neither of us has sampled these grapes, and neither of us would ever buy these grapes. If other people want to, though, I don't see it as a problem. It's their money.

8 ( +11 / -2 )

What's that saying? "A fool and his money...?"

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

I am quazaillionare!!!!! I have 40 grape vines that produce 160 bunches a year x what 30 grapes per bunch? 30 x 160 bunches = 4800 grapes @ $180 a grape??? hmmm BUYERS leave an e-mail (LOL) (4 different high quality varieties as well)

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

It's ironic that some people criticize cultivating and auctioning of quality fruits, part of a very essential industry, which enriches and diversifies the food market while at the same time go drinking their coffee at exploitive institutions like Star Bucks and the like. But no surprise there! It's always the same people who don't get the bigger picture.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Nobody forces anyone to buy expensive fruits but there is always someone with enough money to be a customer.

agreed and here the customer is a wedding hall operator & for him it's like a cost of an advertisement, quite cheap i guess.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Publicity stunt? or just showing off wealth?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

This article has nothing to do with a ragtag like me.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@smithinjapan it's like that fake labeling by the hotels and department stores that were being warned; people paying up just because but really can't tell the difference.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It's crass.

But it's also market positioning in Japan, where people will buy an exact same product at the higher price in the belief that it's somehow better.

The gullible will queue up for these grapes, and wonder how their smarter neighbours can afford frequent trips while they sit at home surrounded by cheap trinkets.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Of course they aren't worth that much but it is a common practice in Japan on the first day of the buying season for buyers to bid high in order to bring attention to the product. Same as the tuna that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars or the melons that a high bidder may pay millions of yen for. It's more about advertising and promoting the product (and a 30-second TV commercial costs way more than 550,000 yen).

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Something is worth whatever someone is willing to pay for it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It's just a matter of supply and demand.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

I will post my local community's on file response to any 'highest' bid for food: Obscene.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

in Italy it was paying € 4 per kilo

1 ( +2 / -1 )

fresh fruits are a luxury in japan? ROFL

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

If they want to waste money let them... Meanwhile I'm off to my local ASDA for a bunch of grapes for £1.50 (175yen)

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

wow....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Hruak. Need to luck at your exchang rates there and please support your local greengrocers!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

JA PR juggernaut hard at work again, we all know that the higher the price the better the quality and safety.... right!?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

You see time and again with taste tests that people actually can't tell the difference most of the time between this 100,000 yen grapes and 500 yen grapes from the local supermarket.

I doubt it.

I've had good and bad grapes at the lower end of supermarket prices, and I've had grapes that were sent as a gift and (judging from the place of origin), would have cost far more than I would ever want to pay, or even want someone else to pay on my behalf. They were excellent, and certainly didn't taste like the everyday kind. Not worth the price, but damn good, as they should be. Telling the difference in a blind test would be the easiest thing in the world.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@CrazyJoe It's just a matter of supply and demand. well the supply is closed to Japanese producers with foreign ones getting screwed up the rear with high tarriffs, if Japanese agriculture markets where open theyd see that there are plenty of countries that make excellent quality grapes (all the best wines are foreign) at a fraction what Japanese are srewed to pay, also the extra competition will just make J farmers off better products are reducted prices. bring on the TPP

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It would seem to me most of these comments are just a bunch of "sour grapes"... Having said that, I much prefer to "drink" my (fermented) grapes out of a 299 yen bottle... (bought at our friendly neighbourhood supermarket... ;) )

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I remembered buying some square shape melon to a subordinate of mine who was hospitalized in a auto accident. That stupid square thing costed me 35,000yen. I can buy the same weight watermelon in LA twice the tastiness for a total of usd$10 bucks in wholefood or vons.

The only difference was the level of kawaii-ness and the nice box that came with it. Which is just stupid. ITs a freaking fruit. But its supposed to be a Japanese thing to do.

And she was happy and brought a smile to her face. So I guess its alright from that perspective.

550,000 yen for a bunch of grapes? If I buy them and eat them, I better crap gold seeds after.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Time to start a fruit farm I guess

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I doubt that a huge percentage of consumers would be able to tell the difference from one strain of high grade of grapes to another. Maybe if there was a Television Champion episode about grapes we could see some experts telling us the difference in skin thickness, juiciness, sweetness etc.

I remember reading about a meat shop in Sendai pulling the good ole' bait and switch tactic. The customers never knew the difference.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I remembered buying some square shape melon to a subordinate of mine who was hospitalized in a auto accident. That stupid square thing costed me 35,000yen.

I hope you didn't eat it - those square watermelons are not meant to be eaten.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What serendipitous said (cited below). I wouldn't be surprised if (in many of if not all of these cases) little or no money exchanges hands...or the purchaser is 'reimbursed' or 'thanked' by those selling the goods in question.

It's all about the show folks...nothing to see here...move along...

Of course they aren't worth that much but it is a common practice in Japan on the first day of the buying season for buyers to bid high in order to bring attention to the product. Same as the tuna that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars or the melons that a high bidder may pay millions of yen for. It's more about advertising and promoting the product (and a 30-second TV commercial costs way more than 550,000 yen).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

2 people must have sour grapes over the fact that I can buy grapes rather cheaply.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Use that wasted money to buy toys for needy children.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This is really unbelievable price. It seems that Japanese don't care about prices even if too high prices. TPP would not work for Japan.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Vile

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I would like to direct your attention to a TV show, Penn and Teller's "Bull****". Specifically the episode about bottled water. That says it all for what's going on in the article.

Or, tl;dr version: A fool and their money are soon parted.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was surprised to see a higher price than I had originally imagined, but I would like bridal couples to savor them and have a great memory.

A more blunt and accurate way of saying that would have started with, "...a fool and his money..."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Personally i feel it is a very irritating news to read. I wish they could spend the money to feed some hungry family or some kind of charity instead. Would love to see the face of the buyers, just curious to see how they look like.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

When the prices are this high, it's my belief that the fruit in question is purchased soley because of the high price. Part of the mentality is to show how wealthy they are, especially if it's a gift. The receiver tends to know the high cost of the fruit and is supposed to be suitably impressed about how much money was spent on them.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I thought that went without saying.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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