In a fiery upset, Guinness World Records has officially declared “Pepper X” as the hottest chili pepper on the planet, unseating the Carolina Reaper after a decade of reign.
Ed Currie, the mastermind behind both record-breaking peppers, proudly shared, “This was a team effort. We knew we had something special, so I only let a few of my closest family and friends know what was really going on.”
After a decade of meticulous cultivation on his South Carolina farm, Mr. Currie remained tight-lipped about his project to safeguard his intellectual property. As a result, Pepper X pods and seeds will not be available for sale.
Laboratory tests conducted at Winthrop University in South Carolina revealed that Pepper X boasts an average of 2,693,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHU), a staggering one million units hotter than Mr. Currie’s previous creation, the Carolina Reaper, which averaged 1,641,183 SHU.
Wilbur Scoville, a pharmacist, introduced the Scoville Scale in 1912, a measurement of capsaicin dilution. Capsaicin is the chemical responsible for the spicy sensation in peppers, known to trigger the release of dopamine and endorphins in the body.
Contrary to popular belief that the heat of a pepper comes from its seeds, capsaicin is concentrated in the placenta, the tissue that houses the seeds. Due to Pepper X’s unique curves and ridges, there is a larger surface area for the placenta to develop, as confirmed by the Guinness World Records.
Remarkably, Mr. Currie is one of only five individuals who have consumed an entire Pepper X. Recounting the experience, he shared, “I was feeling the heat for three and a half hours. Then the cramps came… Those cramps are horrible. I was laid out flat on a marble wall for approximately an hour in the rain, groaning in pain.”
Pepper X is the result of a crossbreeding experiment between a Carolina Reaper and a “brutally hot” pepper sent to Mr. Currie by a friend from Michigan.
In a bid to safeguard his intellectual property and reap profits this time around, Pepper X pods and seeds will remain off the market. The only way to savor the fiery flavor of Pepper X will be through commercially available hot sauces. Mr. Currie’s lawyer noted that over 10,000 products had used the Carolina Reaper name without authorization, underscoring the importance of protecting his creations.