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Temple In Hiroshima Installs Burger Vending Machine, Comes With Fortune Slip

Temple sells burger in vending machine

A vending machine carrying burgers sounds fairly pedestrian, given that Japan has a penchant for selling anything and everything that can fit into the automated machine. But what if you can fill your tummy while you get your fortune read concurrently? Well, a temple in Hiroshima recently installed a vending machine that sells burgers that come with fortune slips. 

Burger vending machine at Nichiren Hongakuji  

Temple burger vending machine - burger vending machine
Image credit: @hbn7620

Just a stone’s throw away from the UNESCO World Heritage Site Atomic Bomb Dome, Nichiren Hongakuji is a nondescript temple with over 400 years of history. Recently, a burger vending machine was found stationed outside the premises of the humble temple. 

Temple burger vending machine - staff posting in front of machine
Image credit: Nichiren Shu Kofuzan Hongakuji

According to Yahoo News, the vending machine was set up with the intention of bringing some joy to local residents in the midst of a global pandemic. Evidently, the plan was a success – Nichiren Hongakuji reported that as many as 100 burgers get sold daily, and the machine has to be replenished several times a day.  

Each burger comes with a fortune slip

Temple burger vending machine - burgerImage adapted from: san tomo

The vending machine offers six burger selections, ranging from classics such as cheese burgers to localised ones that incorporate the flavour of okonomiyaki, which is Hiroshima’s signature delicacy. Each burger costs around ¥300 (~USD2.54) to ¥350 (~USD2.96)

Temple burger vending machine - fortune slip that comes with the burger
Image credit: miharusha

You can even have your fortune told while you eat. Every burger comes with an omikuji that’s affixed on the burger box. Fortune slips can typically be purchased at temples and shrines for ¥100 (~USD0.85) onwards, so if you purchase one of these fortune-telling burgers, you’re basically getting your omikuji for free. 

As the burgers are kept chilled to maintain their freshness, Nichiren Honkakuji recommends visitors to warm them up at home first before digging in.  

Part of the proceeds goes to helping less-privileged children

Temple burger vending machine - staff posting in front of vending machine
Image credit: Nichiren Shu

Besides bringing some excitement to the residents, the vending machine was also set up to support the temple’s running of kodomo shokudō (子ども食堂) – loosely translated as “Children’s Cafeteria” – which provides free and low-cost meals to children from less-privileged backgrounds.

Part of the proceeds go towards running the temple’s Children’s Cafeteria, which is open once every month, according to their website

Temple in Hiroshima installs fortune burger vending machine

Aside from the novelty of getting our fortune told with a side of burger, it’s heartening to know that our money spent will go towards a meaningful cause. Do drop by and support them if you are in the area.

Address: Hongakuji 1 Chome−4−10 Tokaichimachi, Naka Ward, 730-0805 Hiroshima
Opening hours: 24 Hours, Daily
Telephone: 050-3717-7620

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Cover image adapted from: @hbn7620 and miharusha