"Pepper X" has claimed the title of the world's hottest chilli pepper, averaging a scorching 2,693,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHU).
The creator of Pepper X, Ed Currie of the Puckerbutt Pepper Company, also brought the previous record-holder, the Carolina Reaper, at 1.64 million SHU. The Guinness World Records has described The Carolina Reaper as "hundreds of times hotter than a jalapeno pepper".
Pepper X's spiciness has been confirmed by experts at Winthrop University in South Carolina.
To put it in perspective, a mild jalapeno scores just 3,000 to 8,000 SHU. The Scoville scale measures spiciness based on capsaicin concentration.
The official Guinness World Records website says, "Ed cultivated Pepper X on his farm for over 10 years, cross-breeding it with some of his hottest peppers to increase its capsaicin content."
Contrary to common belief, the pepper's seeds aren't what makes it hot. It's the placenta, the tissue around the seeds. Pepper X's distinctive shape, full of curves and ridges, provides extra space for the placenta, making it exceptionally spicy.
After having worked on Pepper X for over a decade, Ed Currie is already hunting for the next spicy contender.
Bhut Jolokia, a variety from the Northeast of India, is also one of the hottest peppers in the world and is currently ranked seventh among the list of the world's hottest peppers. Bhut Jolokia scores 1,001,304 SHU on the hotness scale.
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