May 29 (UPI) -- Two melons grown in a prized region in Japan sold for a record-breaking price at a wholesale market's fruit auction.
The melons, grow in Yubari, Hokkaido, sold for $29,436.80 at the Sapporo market, besting the $13,798.50 fetched by a pair of melons sold at the auction last year and the $27,597 record set in 2016.
Shinya Noda, the winning bidder and president of fruit and vegetable packaging company Hokuyu Pack, said he wanted to make a large gesture to celebrate the 20th anniversary of his company.
"I wanted to make a record-setting bid by all means," he told the Mainichi Shimbun.
Noda said the melons will go on display until the end of the month, when they will be cut up and distributed as free samples to market customers.
A total of 507 melons from Yubari were auctioned Saturday, the city's agricultural cooperative said.