Monday 19 March 2012

Private Label - The Fifth Generation?

                                                                                                        pic: BBC
No longer content with even the Finest Fourth Generation, Senbikiya sells only perfect fruit - with a price tag to match!
As you know (!), giving fruit as a gift is a common custom in Japan. But this fruit is not your normal greengrocers' produce, complete with bumps, bruises and blemishes. The pick of the crop is grown with exquisite care and attention to detail - and commands an eye-watering price when it comes to market.

Instore refinement
Classical music plays softly over the speakers in the Senbikiya shop in central Tokyo. The uniformed members of staff are politely attentive, ushering the customers to chairs and crouching down beside them to take their orders.
The ceilings are high, the fittings elegant, the lighting tasteful and the displays are beautiful. But this is not some designer handbag emporium or high-end jewellery store.  Senbikiya is a greengrocers!
See 10 pic Slideshow

The ultimate assortment 
There are apples, the size of a child's head, with evenly red, blemish-free skin on sale for 2,100 yen, or $25. That's each, not for a bag. Senbikiya Queen Strawberries come in boxes of twelve perfectly matched fruits at 6,825 yen, $83. Even on a slow day they sell 50 boxes.
Then there are the melons, each perfect, of course, and topped with identical T-shaped green stalks. They're 34,650 yen, or $419, for three.
Given Japan’s gradual emergence from 20 years of austerity, could the launch of a Tesco Fifth Generation in Private label be a more credible sign of the UK’s faltering steps out of recession via new levels of quality…?

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