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China’s love for Indian hot chillies spices up exports

India is not just supplying rice to Chinese kitchens. Chillies have also seen an increase in demand along with rice. China, one of the world’s largest chilli producers, has now begun importing the key ingredient for cooking from India. Despite producing over 45 percent of the world’s chillies, China has started importing them as Indian chillies are spicier and better, an exporter told India Narrative.

According to a recent report, Chinese people have taken to Indian chillies in recent years, which are hotter than those produced elsewhere. Nearly half of the hot spice exports are now going to China, according to the report. It was reported by Xinhua’s Chinese outlet that 780 hectares were planted with chillies in 2018. Over 16 million chilli seedlings were given out by local officials, inspiring more than 653 hectares of chilli to be grown by more than 5461 poor families.

‘However, many of these crops have been damaged due to excessive rain and floods. Important chilli growers in the United States were also hit by COVID-19 last year,’ the exporter explained. China produces a large amount of chilli in Guizhou, Hunan, Jiangxi, Hebei, Henan, Shaanxi and Sichuan . Other countries such as South Korea, Australia, the Middle East and Australia have increased their demand for Indian chillies and chilli powder.

In 2020-21, India exported about 6,01,500 tonnes of various types of red chillies worth about Rs 8,430 crore. In 2017, global trade in chilli peppers, as measured by Produce Report, was worth roughly $30 billion, greater than that for coffee or tea. Chilli peppers are not only necessary for daily food consumption, but they are also a key ingredient in several pharmaceutical products. The popularity of chillies around the globe is unsurprising.

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The government’s Press Information Bureau issued a statement on Thursday saying that a shipment of 250 kg of Bhoot Jolokia peppers from Nagaland, which are worldwide considered to be the hottest chilli peppers, was sent to London for the first time. ‘In a major contribution to exports of Geographical Indications (GI) products from the north-eastern region, a shipment of ‘Raja Mircha’ also known as king chilli from Nagaland was today exported to London via Guwahati by air for the first time,’ the PIB said on Wednesday. In 2008, it received GI certification. An APEDA-assisted packhouse assisted with the packaging of the consignment in Guwahati after sourcing it from Tening, part of Peren district in Nagaland.


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