The current record holder for the hottest pepper in the world belongs to The Carolina Reaper. This cross between the former record burning Ghost Pepper and a Habanero ranges from 1,500,000 to 2,200,000 SCU (Scoville Heat Units).
To help wrap your tongue around the kind of heat The Carolina Reaper packs, consider this. Those jalapeno peppers that make your eyes water and have you lunging for the water glass? They ring in at a measly 2,500 – 10,000 SCU. Yup, The Carolina Reaper is hot. Crazy hot.
“Smokin” Ed Currie who owns PuckerButt Pepper Company in Fort Mill created The Carolina Reaper in his Rock Hill, South Carolina greenhouse. His interest in growing peppers that pack a punch peaked when he learned that indigenous people who ate a lot of hot peppers had very low incidents of heart disease and cancer; two diseases that plagued Ed’s family. He started experimenting with growing peppers in the 1990’s and has been spicing up the pepper world ever since.
Whenever I hear about hot pepper stories I think of the one Lois Hole tells in her book “I’ll Never Marry a Farmer”. One summer the founders of Hole Greenhouses in St Albert, Edmonton Canada found themselves inundated with an assortment of peppers. They set about chopping up and freezing their huge harvest. At one point Lois’s husband Ted excuses himself to use the washroom. Lois’s chopping is interrupted by a horrible yell from the bathroom. Everyone washes their hands after they use the facilities but who does it before? Not Ted. You can read the whole story here!
A lesson learned for pepper chopping men out there. Especially The Carolina Reaper. Respect the Reaper.