Air: We breathe it. We love it. It's available, well, everywhere. But now you can buy it as a World Cup souvenir.
No, seriously. Brazilian air is available for purchase. And it comes in great-looking sardine can.
A seemingly simple idea has made Alessandro Catenaci more than $67,000 ($150,000 reais in Brazilian currency): He's selling sardine cans filled with air from some of the host cities of the World Cup.
"The idea is not to sell the 'air' of each city. The tin should not be opened. We sell the concept of the person to take home the air of our country," said Catenaci, 37, a travel agent from Curitiba and the man behind the idea.
Catenaci said he came up with the idea a year ago when he entered the canned air souvenir idea in a local contest – a contest he won. Alessandro coated the sardine cans with painted illustrations of Curitiba and some of the city's sites. He then invested in the business, ordering 2,000 cans to sell to retailers. The cans were quickly purchased by local Curitiba retailers and were an instant hit.
Today, you can purchase the famed air-filled sardine cans in one of 55 shops around Brazil. Some of the cities you can purchase the air of include Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Salvador. There is even a can filled with air from beautiful Iguassu Falls. If not, you can always get a generic "Brazil" can as well.
On the sardine cans, it states the air inside the can has the ability to "relieve stress and cure nostalgia for Brazil with good memories."
Each can costs 10 reais each, which is about $4.50 U.S. While it may seem odd to buy canned air, the cans do look cool, they are collectable, and Alessandro says you're not just buying air, you are taking home a bit of Brazil with you.
"Tourists always talk about the aura of a place," he told the Wall Street Journal. "This way, they can take home some of that atmosphere."
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