Origin and Distribution


Origin Black pepper is native to the Western Ghats of Kerala State, India, where it still occurs wild in the mountains. This area is thought to be the centre of origin for the crop because the diversity of cultivated forms are greatest here. It has spread from India to Southeast Asia through pepper vine cuttings brought by people migrating from India to Indonesia and other countries.
History The popular names designated to the crop, such as " King of Spices " and " Black Gold " reveals the importance of the crop-attained world over. Being a native of Western Ghats, pepper forms an important ingredient of several indigenous medicines of India. The name pepper comes from the Sanskrit word “pippali” meaning berry.
Distribution Pepper has been one of the most ancient commodities of the spice trade. Together with ginger, it has the longest history of export from South Asia dating back at least 4000 years. Most ports and trading stations for black pepper were located in Southwest India where wild populations of the plants grew. Apart from India, black pepper is widely cultivated throughout Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Tropical Africa, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and China.
References Kerala Agricultural University. 2002. Package of Practices Recommendations: Crops. 12th Edition
(eds. A. I. Jose et al.). Kerala Agricultural University, Trichur. 278p.