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Food & Beverage

Japan's sashimi vending machines hook new customers

COVID brings dispensers offering steaks, sweets and late-night treats

This sashimi vending machine, near the Omicho Market in Kanazawa, sells three to four kinds of seasonal fish for 500 yen a pack.

KANAZAWA, Japan -- A couple of brand-new vending machines selling sashimi, small pieces of fresh raw fish, recently made their debut in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, on the Japan Sea coast. The food dispensers are the latest innovation in Japan's rich vending machine culture.

The sashimi vending machines appeared in Ohmicho Ichiba, a market known as "Kanazawa's kitchen," earlier this month. The sashimi automats were set up primarily as a noncontact way to offer sashimi to customers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now they are helping satisfy the late-night cravings of a whole new group of fish lovers.

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