Who are you rooting for? Nerima locals compete in radish-pulling contest

Dozens of residents competed in pulling radishes in Tokyo’s Nerima district on Sunday, as they participated in the annual Daikon radish-picking contest.

“I want to get to 98 cm today,” said one competitor. “My record is 98 cm right now… looks like under 88 cm. I did my best. We did our best. It’s pretty tough“, another competitor stated while speaking during an interview. Footage showed participants passionately pulling out radishes while showing off their work. The unique shape of the ‘Daikon‘ (Japanese for ‘big root’) makes the process tricky and requires talent. “It was very heavy. I couldn’t pull it out. It was hard, and it was tough,” admitted another contestant, Saori.

The Daikon has been grown locally for centuries; each radish can reach over one metre in length and weigh several kilograms.

The male and female winners of this year’s speed competition managed to pull out 23 and 21 radishes in two minutes, respectively.

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