Fancy Japanese Bananas Have Serial Numbers

Illustration for article titled Fancy Japanese Bananas Have Serial Numbers
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Earlier today in Tokyo, limited edition bananas went on sale. They even had serial numbers. Yes, serial numbers. On bananas.

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As reported by Entabe, NariNari and on Excite News, Dole released the premium bananas at Takashimaya Department Store in Shinjuku this morning. The bananas were priced at 590 yen ($5.80) each, packaged in a special box, and sported a serial number on the skin. Only 59 went on sale, and they were offered today only.

Illustration for article titled Fancy Japanese Bananas Have Serial Numbers
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What's with the number 59? The name of these bananas is "Gokusen" (極撰), with the character for "goku" () referring to "extreme" or "culmination," and the character for "sen" () referring to "compilation." Since today is May 9 (5/9), the event is a Japanese pun: the number five is "go" (五), while the number nine is "ku" (九). Geddit?

Launching in 2009, the Gokusen banana has been on sale for a while now. It is Dole Japan's most delicious and fragrant banana. They were developed by researching and singling out the best features of over a hundred other bananas. As Marusho-Iizuka notes, the bananas are cultivated in the Philippines at over 500 meters above sea level.

Illustration for article titled Fancy Japanese Bananas Have Serial Numbers

These limited edition Gokusen bananas that went on sale today are the best of the best, measuring and weighing in at 200 grams. Typical bananas weigh in at around 100 grams and don't cost six bucks each.

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Gokusen [Dole Japan]

シリアルナンバー印字のバナナ、ドールが1本590円の「極撰」限定販売。[NariNari]

1本590円、ドールの超高級バナナを手に入れろ! 新宿高島屋で限定販売 [Entabe]

1本590円もする超高級バナナ「極撰 プレミアムバナナ」を食べてみた [Excite]

To contact the author of this post, write to bashcraftATkotaku.com or find him on Twitter @Brian_Ashcraft.

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Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.

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DISCUSSION

Diversionist
Diversionist

I am no super tree-hugger, but I do try to limit the amount of waste I produce and recycle when possible. Thus, seeing bananas wrapped in a plastic bag like in the second picture drives me crazy. Bananas have a built-in wrapper — it's called the peel. I guess it's better than the individually wrapped bananas I saw they were planning on selling: