Natco Whole Black Pepper 100gProduct Description: One of the World’d most important spices,Whole peppercorns are the small round berries of a climbing vine-the ‚Piper Nigrum‘. No other spice can do so much for so may foods. Use for pickling, flavouring soups, meats, poultry, fish or simply grinding directly on to food.Storage: Store in a cool dry place.Natco Foods Ltd,Bukingham, MK18 1TB, UK Black pepper is one spice that can be easily found in every kitchen. For centuries, it has been amongst the most valuable spices, and, known as black gold had made its way quickly,through trade,in every corner of the world.It is the sixth most expensive spice in the world. The black peppercorns are harvested when the fruit is half ripe. It is then dried in the sun, after which it shrivels up and changes its green colour to charcoal. The white peppers are formed when the berries turn ripe and are harvested, shelled, and dried in the sun. Unlike many other spices which are naturally grown in many parts of the world, black pepper is only native to a small town in Southwest India, named Kerala. Black pepper has a woody fragrance, and a dry, pungent, spicy taste. In the powdered form, it can cause sneezing if it is inhaled. Like cinnamon, black pepper retains its flavour best when it is in its shrivelled, berry form. The powdered form easily loses its flavour, even when stored in ideal dry and dark conditions. Storage of Black Pepper Be careful when you are buying whole black pepper. Make sure that the berries are intact and no pieces are broken off. You can easily store black peppercorns in jars, and whenever required, you can crush them or grind them. Crushed and ground pepper should be stored carefully in airtight jars, and away from the sun. They should be stored in small amounts so that they are used up quickly without the loss of flavour and fragrance. Health Benefits of Black Pepper Black pepper has many health benefits. From common cold to respiratory disorders and heart disease, black pepper can help prevent and stabilize many diseases. This spice is packed with anti-inflammatory agents, vitamins and minerals. Black pepper is good for your digestive health, as its pungent taste triggers the secretion of hydrochloric acid in the body, which ensures proper digestion. In many Ayurvedictonics for coughs and colds, pepper is added to alleviate the nasal congestion. It helps to break up the phlegm and mucus deposits and expel them while coughing or sneezing, clearing away the way for comfortable breathing. Pepper is also good for serious respiratory problems like asthma and whooping cough. Black pepper has an amazing benefit of allowing other nutrients to be absorbed by the body by enhancing the bioavailability. Regular consumption of pepper keeps the arteries clean and helps the body fight against infections and insect bites. Black pepper includes the alkaloid piperine, which is responsible for its pungent taste and the ability to improve cognitive functions.