Suppliers of Cardamom, Cloves, Black Pepper, Vanilla, Allspice, Cinnamon, Dried Lemons from 3 Continents

Interesting Facts...
  Humans were using spices in 50,000  BC. The spice trade developed throughout the Middle East in around 2000 BC with cinnamon and pepper, and in East Asia (Korea, China) with herbs and pepper.

  In the 18th century, Holland had such a fiercely guarded monopoly on the clove trade that the government made growing or selling cloves outside its colony of Amboina, in Indonesia, a crime punishable by death. The Chinese were said to use them as far back as 226 BC. Apparently they chewed the flowerettes prior to having an audience with the Emperor so that their breath would not smell bad.

Cardamom is used to break up kidney stones and gallstones, and was reportedly used as an antidote for both snake and scorpion venom. Guatemala is the largest producer of cardamom in the world with an average yield of between 25 thousand to 29 thousand metric tons annually.

Vanilla is the only edible fruit of the orchid family, the largest family of flowering plants in the world

The early term for "merchant" in Austronesian is *dagang (Dempwolff) and this word is very similar to one of the terms for "ocean."

Columbus' far-fetched proposal to reach the East Indies by sailing westward received the support of the Spanish crown, which saw in it a promise, however remote, of gaining the upper hand over rival powers in the contest for the lucrative spice trade with Asia

The Cashew Nut is actually a seed and not a "nut", in the botanical sense.  The seed is surrounded by a double shell containing an allergenic phenolic resin, anacardic acid, a potent skin irritant chemically related to the more well known allergenic oil urushiol which is also a toxin found in the related poison ivy. Properly roasting cashews destroys the toxin, but it must be done outdoors as the smoke (not unlike that from burning poison ivy) contains urushiol droplets which can cause severe, sometimes life-threatening, reactions by irritating the lungs.

While native to Brazil, the Portuguese took the cashew plant to Goa, India, between the years of 1560 and 1565. From there it spread throughout Southeast Asia and eventually Africa.

beans from Madagascar

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    Kautilya Commodities is continuing the age old spice trade but with a zeal, a fervor and a passion far greater than the spice merchants of that time long gone.

    Since the time that gastronomically driven humans learned cooking, they have been endlessly treading the path of attaining a culinary excellence.  Civilisations of yore to corporates of today bear testimony to the fact that only a few industries have forged and ravaged as many fortunes as the spice trade.  At various periods in history, spices have been as valuable as gold and silver. Venice built its Renaissance splendour with riches from the sale of black pepper, and it was the quest for spices, not gold, that launched fleets of explorers towards the New World.  The fight to control the flow of cloves, nutmeg, black pepper, gold, silver and other commodities led to the circumnavigation of Africa and the world, and the exploration of the Western hemisphere and the Pacific Ocean. 

    Producer of cardamom in GuatemalaIndia-Indonesia-Ethiopia-Middle East-Madagascar-Guatemala-Vietnam-Sudan
    At the helm of this ‘paradoxical’ trade was not the glitter of gold but the allures of a better taste and later on the scents. The Portuguese dominated the pepper trade on India's Malabar Coast, the Dutch East India Company controlled Indonesian
    cloves, and the Spanish had the monopoly on New World vanilla.  The French, meanwhile, eased their dependence on foreign spices by developing plantations in their Indian Ocean colonies, including Madagascar, which lies 250 miles off the coast of Mozambique.  The island yielded excellent cloves, black pepper and nutmeg, but it was the cultivation of superb vanilla, introduced to Madagascar's fertile red soil in the mid-19th century, that secured the island's reputation as one of the world's great spice centers.

    Historians believe that the spices may have landed initially at Madagascar and they eventually were transported to the East African trading ports in and around the city known in Greco-Roman literature as Rhapta. Merchants then moved the commodities northward along the coast. In Roman times, they traveled to Adulis in Eritrea and then to Muza in Yemen and finally to Berenike in Egypt. From Egypt they made their way to all the markets of Europe and West Asia.

    Similarly, cardamom found its route all the way to Guatemala.  Of course, cardamom had a peaceful journey to Guatemala unlike some of the other spice.

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    vanilla from Madagascar
    Cinnamon from Madagascar
    This spice gets its name from the French word “clou” which means nail, as many have remarked on how much
    cloves look like nails. One of the most precious spices of the 16th and 17th century, cloves have triggered wars and expeditions.
    producer of vanilla in Madagascar

    Native to Ceylon (Sri Lanka), true cinnamon, Cinnamomum zeylanicum, dates back in Chinese writings to 2800 B.C., and is still known as kwai in the Chinese language today. Cinnamon's botanical name derives from the Hebraic and Arabic term amomon, meaning fragrant spice plant. Cinnamon has a long history both as a spice and as a medicine. There was a saying in the 15th century, "No man should die who can afford cinnamon!"
    Allspice from GuatemalaALLSPICE
    Allspice was used as a seasoning and to embalm the dead in before fifteenth century by Mayas of Latin America. The Aztecs employed allspice to sweeten and flavour their favourite chocolate drink..

    Dried Lemons from Guatemala
    Black Lime (also known as Dried Lime, Loomi, Lumi, Noomi Basra, Omani, Amani, Dried Lemons and Black Lemon)is a spice used in Middle Eastern dishes. Dried Lemons are made by boiling fresh lime in salt water and sun drying until the insides turn black.


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    Click here for Other Products Raw Cashews (cashew nuts),  Voatsiperifery Pepper

    Vanilla Raw Cashews
    Cardamom has been used as a perfume, an aphrodisiac, a mouth freshner, a medicine ... and much more. Originally from India, at present Guatemala is the large producer of cardamom in the world.  It is often referred to as the "
    Queen of Spices", and Grains of Paradise

    Madagascar is the World Vanilla capital and  is currently responsible for the vast majority of the world's bourbon vanilla production and about 58% of the world's total vanilla bean production.  The vanilla flower only lasts about one day, sometimes less! Therefore, farmers have to inspect their vanilla plantations every day for open flowers on the vanilla plants, a labor-intensive task.
    Black pepper is native to India and is extensively cultivated there and elsewhere in tropical regions and is the worlds one of the most traded spice so much so that it has often been referred to as the "king of spices".     Although South East Asia is the largest producer of black pepper, the Madagascar black pepper prides in its aristocracy.


    Click here for Other Products Raw Cashews (cashew nuts), Voatsiperifery Pepper