THE FIRST FRUITS ATTRACT
A trader puts a price tag of 1.5m Japanese yen (about R147 000) onto a box of Yubari Melon, which contains two melons, during the first auction of the season at Sapporo Central Wholesale Market on 22 May in Sapporo, Japan. The Yubari melons are famous for their orange flesh and are often bought as luxury gifts in Japan. As the first harvest of fruit is often considered good luck in Japan, the opening auction typically attracts the highest bids. The 2014 auction attracted the highest price on record, when a buyer paid 2.5m yen (about R245 000) for two melons. Yubari Melon is a registered trademark owned by the Yubari City Agricultural Cooperative, located in the former mining town of Yubari about 1 200km north of Tokyo.