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Sato Nishiki, Japan Cherry

by MBG Online on April 19, 2018

Japan is a nation that's full of cherry trees. They're found in parks, schools, government buildings, public land and private residences all over the country.

In Japan, there are many regions that are known for having the variety of fruit production. One of them, Yamagata Prefecture, is especially known for its cherries and accounts for about 70 percent of the nation’s cherry production.

Cherries produced in Yamagata, the most popular is the Sato Nishiki. Accounting for about 70 percent of national production and popular abroad as well, Sato Nishiki cherries offer the trifecta of taste, aesthetic appeal, and long shelf life.

The originator of Sato Nishiki cherries was the farmer Eisuke Sato of Higashine City, Yamagata Prefecture. In the early 20th century, the breeds of cherries available would often go bad quickly once they were harvested, spoiled while being exported, and had countless other problems.

To address the situation, Sato crossbred Tobaz cherries, which have a good flavor but short shelf life. With Napoleon cherries, which are very sour but have a long shelf life. After 16 years of effort, the Sato Nishiki was born, boasting large fruit a refreshingly sweet taste.


The cherry season is from June to July but this year they come earlier. So want to try picking and eating fresh cherries in Yamagata? Simply order (pre-order) from mbg @ https://goo.gl/YMx7Mo

When it’s ripe:

It's a small, light-colored cherry that's bright red when fully ripe.

Fruity flesh is brilliantly ruby-red, soft, creamy white and has the good balance of acidity and sweetness.

Fun Facts:

What does “Sato Nishiki” mean? The name comes from a farmer “Eisuke Sato,”  the person who succeeded in cultivating the cherry. It named after his surname. “Sato Nishiki” is thought to be born in Yamagata prefecture, the northern part of Japan by a crossing of “Kidama” and “Napoleon” in an early 20th century.

Cherries are grown in Japan but it's a minor crop as compared with Japanese strawberries, Kaki and Kyoho grapes.

Sato Nishiki Cherries are ranked no.7 of 15 Japanese Fruits


During the Meiji Period (1868-1912), German trader Richard Gaertner introduced cherries to Japan. Cherry cultivation was tested throughout Japan over several years, but most areas failed due to a lack of cherry knowledge combined with the very delicate nature of the cherries themselves. However, in 1876, when cherry seedlings imported from countries including America and France were planted in Yamagata Prefecture by the Ministry of Home Affairs, it was found that the climate and natural features perfectly matched those needed for cherry production. Because the prefecture has relatively little frost and bears negligible damage from typhoons, cherry production succeeded.

Interested? Simply order (pre-order) from mbg @ https://goo.gl/YMx7Mo