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Chilli Picking / Packing

There are several varieties of chili worldwide, but in Western Australia, they are categorized into two kinds. The capsicums are the counterpart of bell peppers in the United States. They are cone or bell shaped with sweet flavor usually seen in salads, stews, stir fries and salsas. Chili peppers, on the other hand, are long cone shaped peppers that are extremely hot and is mostly used as an ingredient to add spice to a recipe. Pizzas, sauces and salsas all need the chili pepper in order to get their spicy flavoring. The demand for chili peppers in Australia has increased through the years, in terms of its culinary contributions.

A chili has several varieties and this includes the Firefly, which can mature up to 9cm long and 1.5cm wide. The hottest variety of chilies in the Western part of Australia is the Habanaro and the very popular one, the Jalapenos. Oval chilies and Cherry bombs may not be as spicy as the other two, but they are significantly hot compared to capsicums. Chilies have a pungent smell when they are ripe but for most growers, they don’t need to ripe fully before they can be harvested. Their primary stage color is green and turns red when they are ripe. After, they turn orange and eventually dries up which you can use to replant again.

Harvesting is by way of hand picking them. Carefully snap them from the tree and remove the remaining stem carefully either by hand or a sharp trimming knife. Make sure not to cut the pepper to avoid the stinging heat in your hands. This will also allow longer storage time when they are whole and free of any breakage. This type of fruit can give you the best yields up to three pick seasons and still continue to do so with less quantity. Depending on the state you want to pick them, an interval of 8 to 20 days will give you enough time to harvest the next one.

Workers who wish to take a job on pepper farms are normally paid daily or by the quantity of their harvest. Fruit picking as well as harvesting of vegetable is very popular for backpackers who wish to apply for a visa extension where the Australian government grant visa extension to those who have legitimately worked on farms for three months. Others take on this kind of job as a security when it comes to their finances because of the fair pay that could help finance their stay in Australia.
Chili peppers have impressive health benefits despite being hot and spicy. They are known to be good sources of vitamin B-complex, an alkaloid compound called capsaicin, which is an anti-bacterial, analgesic, anti-carcinogenic as well as anti-diabetic. They are also known to contain enough vitamins and minerals such as iron, magnesium, potassium and manganese. Its anti-oxidant compounds as well as its ability to regulate blood pressure makes it even more a popular ingredient, not only to culinary establishment, but in the households too.