Drying Rice Rides Ski Lift

Sky rice koshihikari sheaves dry on a ski lift in JapanRice rides a ski lift at a Japanese ski resortA company that operates a ski resort in Japan regularly uses its chairlift to dry sheaves of rice.

The Ishiuchi-Maruyama Resort trademarked the name "Sky Rice" (tenku-mai) for the Koshihikari rice harvested in Minami-Uonuma, Niigata Prefecture.

An employee of Japan Lift Service, which runs the resort, suggested the idea. The employee grew up farming rice before joining the company. JLS  started the sun-dried rice-on-a-lift idea in 2004. 

Hanging rice to dry rather than using a combine harvester results in a moister rice grain with a distinct flavor. The 800 meter ski lift goes into normal use when the Ishiuchi ski season begins in the middle of December.

Sky rice brand koshihikari dries in the sun as it takes a ski lift ride at a resort in Japan
photos: blue sky; indoors, Liftman ; valley Ishiuchi-Maruyama

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