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10 Expensive Food Items Cultivated Around the World

6. Ruby Roman Grapes is a variety of table grapes. They are grown and marketed entirely in Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. The grapes are red in color and each grape is the size of a ping-pong ball. A bunch of Ruby Roman Grapes fetched $10,228 in last year’s auction.

Ruby roman grapes
Image credits: Baneya/Flickr

Ruby Roman grapes are an exclusive variety of luxury grapes grown in Japan. They are known for their sweet taste and are mostly used by high-end restaurants and hotels, pastry shops, and in wedding preparations. In last year’s auction at a wholesale market in Kanazawa, a bunch of Ruby Romans went for $10,228.

The Ruby Roman grapes were developed by the Ishikawa Prefectural Agricultural Research Center over a period of 14 years. Four hundred seeds of “Fujushima,” a variety of black grape were selected and grown. Out of the 400 trees planted, only four produced red grapes. The name “Ruby Roman” was selected after a public vote. These grapes are known for their sweet flavor. Each grape weighs around 20 gm, has low acidity, and at least an 18% sugar content. A premium variety of Ruby Romans also exists with a whole bunch of grapes weighing 700 gm or more. (source)

7. Ayami chicken is a breed of chicken that is completely black including the organs and the bones. On an average an Ayami chicken can cost you $99 – $390. In 2013, Greenfire Farms sold their ayami chicken at an exorbitant price of $2500.

Ayam cemani
Image credits: Pixabay, Hobiternak

Also known as “Ayam cemani,” which translates to”chicken cemani,” Ayami chicken, is mainly found in Indonesia. It originates from Cemani village located in central Java. In Indonesia, Ayami chicken is used for sacrificial purposes as the black-colored blood is considered sacred.

The reason for this strange, black color is a genetic condition known as ‘fibromatosis’ which accumulates melanin in the dermis and other tissues of the chicken. On average, a rooster is about 2 to 2.5 kg, and a hen weighs around 1.5 to 2 kg. In comparison to other breeds that lay 200 to 250 eggs a year, an Ayami chicken lays a mere 60 to 90 eggs.

While the breed is famous for its Indonesian roots, Ayami chickens are also bred in other parts of the world including Europe and the United States. The same breed is also found in central India and is known for its high protein and low fat and cholesterol content. (source)

8. Kobe beef is the most expensive and delicious beef out there. Only nine restaurants in the U.S. serve Kobe beef. The true beef goes for roughly $150 and above per pound.

Kobe beef
Image credits: Pixabay

Kobe beef comes from Hyogo Prefecture in Japan. It is known for its incredibly buttery taste and marbled texture. The name “Kobe” is derived from Kobe, the capital city of Hyogo Prefecture.

Kobe beef is a type of wagyu beef from a breed of Japanese black cattle known as “Tajima.” It is one of the four types of wagyu beef available. The cattle are raised with high and strict standards which include providing them with special feeds made out of grain fodder, and the young calves are fed milk by hand. Once they are seven months old, they’re sold in auctions to fattening farms. On average, one animal weighs around 450 kg. Only 3,000 wagyu qualify as Kobe beef every year.

Although the breed is exclusively raised and traded from Hyogo, Japan, there are a few mixed wagyu breeds that are available in the US and other parts of the world. (source)

9. The most expensive coffee in the world, Kopi Luwak, comes from the feces of civet, a small cat-like animal that cannot digest the coffee beans. It costs about $200 a pound.

Kopi luwak
Image credits: Jordy Meow, Wibowo Djatmiko via Wikimedia

Kopi Luwak coffee is produced in Indonesia. The process of how the coffee is made might not be pleasant for many, but the coffee is known for its smooth and rich flavor. It is produced in the islands of Sumatra, Bali, Sulawesi, and Java – Sumatra being the highest producer of the coffee.


Once the coffee cherries are eaten, they spend a day or two inside the civet’s body. Process of fermentation takes places inside the civet’s intestine, and the beans are finally defecated. The farmers collect the feces and thoroughly wash and roast them. It is believed that selection and digestion of the beans improve the flavor.

One study conducted by Massimo Marcone in the University of Ontario showed that the digestive enzymes of the civet seep into the beans. The entire process changes the protein structure which in turn reduces the bitterness of the coffee beans. Volatile components of coffee which are responsible for its aroma also showed a significant difference impacting the taste and flavor of Kopi Luwak coffee. (source)

10. La Bonnotte potatoes are grown in Noirmoutier, an island in France. The exceptional quality of these potatoes can cost you around $860 per kg.

La Bonnotte
Image credits: Anne le Loirec/Flickr

If you thought we’d forget the most loved food of all, you were wrong. La Bonnotte potatoes do not only sound fancy, but they can also give you potato nightmares.

La Bonnotte potatoes are farmed in Noirmoutier-en-l’Île, France. These potatoes are known for their earthy and salty taste. The soil is fertilized with algae which contributes to the exorbitant taste of the potatoes. One more factor contributing to the high cost is the delicate nature of these potatoes. They need to be harvested manually right before maturity. It is believed that out 10,000 potatoes grown on the island, only 100 are La Bonnette. (source)



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