South Kalimantan village home to Indonesia's hottest chili

South Kalimantan village home to Indonesia's hottest chili
The spiciness of Hiyung chili has led to it becoming a top commodity.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

A village in Tapin regency, South Kalimantan, is now home to the hottest chili in the country.

According to the local administration and residents, chilies planted in the regency's Hiyung village have a spiciness level of up to 94,500 parts per million (ppm), 17 times spicier than a normal chili.

Tapin Regent Arifin Arpan said the chilies could only grow in the village.

"When the seeds were planted in other areas, [the chilies] became less or not spicy," he said in Rantau, South Kalimantan, on Tuesday, as quoted by Antara news agency.

Dubbed cabai Hiyung (Hiyung chili), its spiciness has led to the chili becoming a top commodity. Among the village's 420 family heads, 85 per cent are said to be working as chili farmers.

Read also: 10 spicy foods of the world to try

The chili was first planted in 1993 by Subarjo, who brought 200 seeds from the mountain.

Subarjo said that, aside from spiciness, Hiyung chilies could also last up to 10 days at room temperature.

The current rise in chili prices has allowed the farmers to enjoy some benefits.

Read also: 9 spiciest foods in Singapore and where to find them

"When we started growing the chili, it was priced at Rp 1,500 [S$0.16] per litre. Now [the price] per kilogram has multiplied and reached Rp 150,000," said Subarjo.

Tapin regency has developed 200 hectares of a total 3,000 ha of land targeted for Hiyung chilies.

The development is based on the registration of local crop varieties with the Agriculture Ministry, which requires the regency to be responsible for the cultivation of local crops.

on SPH Brightcove

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