Spice up your Valentines Day – Can colour be used to indicate a chilli’s pungency or spice level?

Nobody really knows how Valentine’s Day became a day of celebration, but the general public understanding is that the Romans had an annual day of fertility in February, and later the Catholic Church honoured two Martyrs with the name Valentine renaming the date St Valentine’s day.

In modern times the day has become a celebration of Romantic Love where lovers share cards, gifts and flowers. Common symbols are hearts, red roses and cupids.

However it started it is now celebrated world-wide. As your shelves become littered with Red food stuffs and gifts. Food is a common way to celebrate with the one closest to you. The word Red is too random a description to describe the countless Red items and varying shade we all come across over this period.

Many associate Red with love, some associate Red with anger but we see the colour Red as a potential indicator of how Spicy a chilli may be.
So we ask the question, does the colour of a chilli have a relationship with how ‘hot’ that chilli is?

If you are planning a hot and spicy valentine’s dinner, make sure that you use only scientifically measured Red Chilli’s from a renowned Spice Purveyor, using the best possible scientific instrument. In this case the Konica Minolta CM-5 Spectrophotometer.

Using the CM-5 Spectrophotometer and SpectraMagic NX our customers have begun linking colour to pungency. Not only do they use our instruments to ensure that their spices and sauces conform to the correct specifications, but they have started to develop a relationship between colour and chilli intensity. Some may call it Colour Grading, where you grade a property and link to to a colour scale.

Read more about this interesting application here:

Contact us to request a demo of this versatile instrument:

Finally we list a few of the possible uses of Colour Measurement in the Spice Industry:

  1. Control drying time to ensure raw ingredients such as peppers are the correct colour before grinding.
  2. Monitor blending time to ensure that correct mix of spices is achieved.
  3. Ensure spices, sauces and ingredients conform to the correct colour standards.
  4. Compare data up and down the supply chain to ensure colour consistency from raw ingredients all the way to the final product.
  5. Indicate pungency and intensity of spices through colour grading and measure the extractable colour of Paprika and Tumeric using the standard ASTA (American Spice Trade Association) tests.

So don’t get caught with your pants down this Valentines Day. Buckle up and start controlling the colour of your spices and ingredients today. Get in touch with us to find the right solution for you.

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