The World's Smelliest Fruit Grounded an Entire Plane in Indonesia
Anthony Bourdain once described it as "French-kissing your dead grandmother."
A flight in Indonesia was grounded on Monday over some particularly foul-smelling cargo.
The Sriwijaya Air flight was bound for Jakarta; however, passengers refused to board because the stench of two tons of durian fruit — otherwise known as stinky fruit — invaded the cabin.
For those not in the know about the fruit’s smell, food writer Richard Sterling once wrote, “its odor is best described as…turpentine and onions, garnished with a gym sock. It can be smelled from yards away.”
Passengers began boycotting the captain’s orders and started getting off the plane, refusing to fly with the offensive fruit in tow. Some passengers argued with crew members and almost came to the point of physical altercation, according to the Jakarta Times.
The airline eventually gave in and unloaded the fragrant cargo. Passengers watched from the side as the fruit was taken off the flight, reboarded, and took off after about an hour delay.
The airline defended its decision to load durian on the plane but said that going forward it would investigate other methods of transporting the fruit to keep from disrupting passengers.
“It’s not illegal to carry durian in a flight as long as it is wrapped properly in accordance with flight regulations – carried inside the hold,” a Sriwijaya Air spokesperson said in a statement. “Many airlines do this.”
Singapore has banned the transport of durian fruit on the subway. It is also not allowed in some hotels in Thailand, Japan, and Hong Kong because of its notorious smell, according to CNN. It’s not uncommon to see “no durian allowed” signs outside of buildings.
If it stinks this bad, you gotta admit, you kind of wonder why anyone would ever want to taste it. But, the durian did have one lover, Anthony Bourdain. The late chef and travel great once said of the fruit: “Indescribable, something you will either love or despise…Your breath will smell as if you’d been French-kissing your dead grandmother.”