Hindi Name: Lal Mirch 

Botanical name: Capsicum annum L Capsicum frutescens L 

Family name: Solanaceae 

Commercial part: Green as well as ripe and dried pod (fruit) 

Unlike most other tropical spices, chilies are easy to cultivate and hence are cultivated in almost all the parts of the world, especially in the regions with tropic climate. Among the main producers of chilies India has an important standing. 

Chilies were first brought to Europe during one of Columbus' expeditions but they did not meet much interest because black pepper seemed a much more promising culinary. However in Spanish and Portuguese colonies chilies did find a place Chilies were and within a few decades chilies became a fixed part in the daily diet of nearly all peoples in South and South East Asia. 

One of the reasons for chilies being adopted more easily than any other spice was the difficulty that the farmers had in growing other pungent spices as they were expensive and difficult to cultivate. Chilies as compared to other spices were easy to cultivate and hot and humid climate in tropical regions, glowing hot desert of Northern India and extreme cold and dry seasons of the Himalayas in Tibet were perfect for its growth. 

Among all the species of chili only five species of genus Capsicum are cultivated, and the most important species economically is Capsicum Annuum besides Capsicum frutescens that includes the Tabasco chili and is the most famous of all hot chilies. 

In Northern India, as well as in Central Asia, chilies are used dried mostly. They are sold whole or ground at the market and are intensively fiery, intensively colored and intensively aromatic. In India, chilies from Kashmir (in the Northwest of India) have the best reputation and chilies are considered to be the universal spice of India. In India the states of Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu are the major chili producing areas and no country in the world has so much area and production of chili as India. 

Chilies have two important commercial qualities, as some varieties are famous for red color because of the pigment Capsanthin while others are known for biting pungency attributed by capsaicin. 

While consumption of chili is the highest in India, maximum export is also from this country and India made the record export of 51,900 tonnes of dry chili in 1996- 97. 

Indian chili and its products are brought by a number of countries. Important among them are Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Korea and USA for dry chili and USA, Ger


Name in international languages


: Pimenton


: Puvre de Guinee


: Paprika


: Filfil Ahmar


: Spaanse Peper


: Peperone


: Pimento


: Struchkovy pyeret


: Togarashi


: Hesiung Yali chiao


: Chillies(Hot) Pepper(Sweet)