Subway Sandwich Japan has established an enviable reputation for providing healthy (well, healthier) fast food with the emphasis on fresh ingredients. Not content to rest on their laurels, SJ is pushing the envelope as far as fresh lettuce is concerned... it's so fresh, it's alive!
The Subway Japan store in the Marunouchi Building, just across the street from bustling Tokyo Station, features a glass-enclosed "vegetable factory" in the center of the store. Within are living lettuce plants in various stages of development, grown hydroponically and without the aid of any agrochemicals.
The living lettuce is an optional ingredient that costs about twice as much as refrigerated lettuce and Subway admits that the small in-store farm can provide no more than 5 percent of the store's actual needs.
Even so, Subway Japan is making a point: their food is not only as fresh as can be, it's also exceptionally safe and can be provided in sustainable ways, even in the heart of Japan's largest city.
According to Subway Japan, the Marunouchi Building store set to open on Tuesday, July 13th is the first of several new stores that will feature hydroponic lettuce factories.
The company is also exploring similar super-fresh vegetable ingredient options through Subway Yasai (vegetable) Lab. You can view a short video of the lettuce factory here. (via Asiajin and MSN/Sankei)