The Carolina Reaper has been declared as the world’s hottest pepper, and it measures 1.6 million on the Scoville scale for heat. The Associated Press reports on Dec. 26 that the pepper is grown by the PuckerButt Pepper Company in South Carolina. The small, bright red chili pepper is now listed in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Ed Currie, the owner of the PuckerButt Pepper Company, is happy his Carolina Reapers have replaced the Trinidad Moruga Scorpions as the world’s hottest peppers. Although the average heat rating of the Carolina Reaper is 1.6 million on the Scoville scale, some of the peppers have reached 2.2 million on the scale. For comparison, a jalapeno pepper tends to be rated between 2,500 to 8,000 on the Scoville scale, and a bell pepper is a rated a 0 on the same scale. Pepper spray tends to be about 2 million on the scale.
The PuckerButt Pepper Company sells several products that rely on the Carolina Reaper for their heat, and they use amusing names such as “Edible Lava” and “Shoot That’s Hot.” The products come with warning labels that advise consumers to eat at their own risk, wash their hands and avoid contact with their eyes.
Currie hopes the recognition from the Guinness Book of World Records and international community will help boost his growing pepper business. He is already thinking about next year because he knows his competition is trying to knock him off the world record seat.