Swiss scientists have come up with a variety of dwarf vegetables to cater for Japan’s growing population of single people.

The Japanese retail giant Aeon will be offering quarter-size cauliflowers and half-size radishes to singles in 270 Jusco stores across the country from November.

The dwarf radish, developed by agribusiness Syngenta Seeds of Switzerland, is eight to 10 inches long – half the usual size.

Aeon spokeswoman Naoko Ueda said the company decided to launch dwarf vegetables after a sales trial of half-sized radishes proved a hit with customers in the Tokyo area.

She added: “We are also planning to launch mini pumpkins.” About 41% of all households in Tokyo are singles, and numbers are continuing to climb.

Story filed: 11:34 Friday 3rd October 2003