When Japanese farmer Minako Shibata unearthed this daikon radish, she saw right away that it looked like a runner. She took photographs of the odd root having a sequence of dangerous adventures, and posted a link to the photos on her Twitter account with the title “Daikon runs away.”
Her friends liked the series and gave it many positive comments. Soon, it began appearing on an internet news search site.
Shibata had no idea how popular the photos would become! Hundreds of thousands of people viewed the site, and the daikon’s fame spread throughout Japan and then internationally.
Running Radish is now used on posters and calendars promoting the Hyogo prefecture where it grew. The region is famous for producing specialty vegetables.
‘I initially wanted to enjoy the photos with my family members,’ Shibata said. ‘But I would be happy if it can help promote local daikon sales. I hope many people will enjoy the photos and eat daikon.’
In Japan, daikon are pickled, used in stir fry, and combined with soy and citrus to make a condiment called ponzu. The greens are eaten fresh in salads.
After Running Radish achieved so much fame, Shibata began encouraging some of her other vegetables to be active on the internet, also
None are as popular as Running Away Radish, who has popped up on all sorts of products. There is even a Running Away Radish book.
Shibata seems to be having a lot of fun with her projects. I think she is an artist as well as a farmer.
Run, Radish, Run!