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Eating uncooked pineapple in the USA always bleeds my lips and tongue.

In past two weeks in Japan, I have bought fresh raw pineapple, and eat one, daily. Each pineapple is pricier, as with most Japanese fruits, than pineapples sold in USA. But in these two weeks, no bleeding in my oral cavity! Why?

Staff at different fruit parlors advised that Japanese pineapples are a different strain, bred against bromelain. Is this correct?

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  • 2
    Did you actually eat a pineapple grown in Japan? IIRC most pineapples I have seen in run-of-the-mill supermarkets in Tokyo are imported.
    – muru
    May 2 at 13:43
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    If there was a niche fruit that caused my mouth to bleed, I can't imagine I'd keep periodically trying it to see if its still hurting me.
    – T.E.D.
    May 2 at 16:20
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    @muru Yes. Japan is labelled origin country. this pineapple's price is too pricey for being imported!
    – user109440
    May 3 at 6:55
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    @user109440 if you can, please add a photo of the label. I'd like to try and find one
    – muru
    May 3 at 7:01
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    Please add a photo of the fruit, and the label. By the way for anyone reading, you can of course no more grow pineapples in 'Japan', than you could grow pineapples in any other mountainous snowy country - they come from Okinawa!
    – Fattie
    May 3 at 12:42

1 Answer 1

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Today I learned about 15 different varieties of edible pineapple, so you definitely ate a different variety in Japan than you're used back home.

There are two components in pineapples that will cause damage to the cells in your mouth:

  • acidity
  • bromelain (which is an enzyme commonly used as meat tenderizer)

Different varieties will have different levels of acidity and/or bromelain, so you possibly found one that is low on either / both.

It seems (thanks user @Lescurel) that there's a GMO pineapple strain called "Pinkglow" that contains a "Bromelain inhibitor gene promoter" - not sure that's what you had but it definitely exists.

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    The "Pinkglow" pineapple from Del Monte, a GMO version of the pineapple modified to be pink, also contains some "Bromelain inhibiter gene promoters". Source
    – Lescurel
    May 2 at 15:19
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    That article seems suspiciously autogenerated, to me. Four separate pineapple were claimed to be, e.g. "the most well-known", "the most iconic", "the most popular type", "The red Spanish pineapple is the most common type of pineapple that you will find in the grocery store". I don't think I'd ever even seen a picture of the red Spanish pineapple. It does appear true that there are many varieties of pineapple, though.
    – Erhannis
    May 3 at 1:32
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    @Erhannis the article is from 2022. Do not suspect foul plAI when human lazyness in providing clickbait content is enough ;)
    – EarlGrey
    May 3 at 10:29

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