Among other things, Japan is known for its crazily expensive fruit. In 2016, a bunch of about 30 grapes sold for 1.1 million yen (US$10,190) in Japan, and since then the same variety of grapes has been hitting record highs every year. A bunch at this year’s first wholesale market auction was actually selling for 1.2 million yen.

The variety is called Ruby Roman, a type of grape which was named by a public vote and made its first debut in 2008. Grown exclusively in Ishikawa Prefecture, Ruby Roman grapes are required to weigh at least 20 grams and have an 18-percent sugar content, leading them to be prized for their sweetness and low acidity.

According to, every grape is carefully inspected to guarantee its quality, with bunches being sold in high-end department stores and specialty shops like Takano, an esteemed Shinjuku-based fruit purveyor with a long-standing reputation that goes all the way back to 1885. –