Superstore goes Super-Hot

We’ve learned recently that Tesco are to stock a pack containing a few of the hottest chillies around.

It seems that the UK has developed a craving for the fiery peppers during lockdown as hobby heat-tasters have been using them more and more in their cooking and experimental sauces, jams and chutneys.

Bedfordshire grower Salvatore Genovese is to provide the retail giant with the chillies, and he is no stranger to mass pepper production, as he currently supplies circa 1m p/week to the UK retail sector.

The trio of chillies reported to be going into Tesco are the Carolina Reaper, Komodo Dragon and the British-bred Armageddon, according to Tesco’s chilli buyer said it’ll be a lucky dip as to what pods are in a packet. There will be ‘up to 3 peppers’ in each pack, depending on size, and the packs will sell for £1 each.

Salvatore said ‘you only have to look online at the growing amount of chilli sauce businesses to see how the UK chilli culture is growing’.
He grew the Armageddon’s last year and aims to grow something commercially which can eclipse the ‘Reaper for potency.

The report tells us that Genovese grows around 15 tonnes a week from his farm in Blunham, Bedfordshire, which got me thinking… with Salvatore’s production coming from a Beds postcode, plus Edible Ornamentals, plus the Sauce Shed facility, and a few others – surely Bedfordshire is the single County in the UK which gives the biggest contribution to our UK chilli industry? Which other British Counties can compete with Bedfordshire’s output?