Gregory Foster (USA) has achieved a scorching new record for the fastest time to eat three Carolina Reaper chillies, chomping them down in just 8.72 seconds in San Diego, California, USA.
The chilli fan attempted the record as a personal challenge, to see how far he could push himself and his love for the Carolina Reaper pepper.
The attempt took place on Saturday, 11 December 2021 at the Seaport Shopping Center in Downtown San Diego.
Many passers-by stopped to watch the attempt. The independent witnesses required for this attempt were locals who were randomly approached and asked to participate.
Incredibly, Gregory actually ended up consuming six Carolina Reaper chillies that day, as he completed two attempts in quick succession.
The first attempt was disqualified as there was pepper matter in his mouth that had not been swallowed by the conclusion of the attempt. He was also unsuccessful in beating the then-current record of 9.72 seconds, held by Mike Jack (Canada).
Because of this, Gregory decided to go straight head and attempt the record again.
According to him, he was "already feeling the effects of the first round of peppers consumed" when he began the second attempt – but from his cool demeanour, you’d never know!
Gregory didn’t even seem to break a sweat from all those peppers, which, combined, is approximately 9.84 Scoville Heat Units (SHU).
The Carolina Reaper pepper has an average of 1,641,183 Scoville Heat Units (SHU), according to tests conducted by Winthrop University in South Carolina, USA. For context, a Jalapeño pepper registers around 2,500 - 8,000 SHU.
Gregory prepared for this attempt by living and eating as he usually does, with "tons of hot sauce and lots of super-hot chili peppers."
He said this attempt was more about mastering his chewing technique, rather than his tolerance for the peppers.
"In practising for an attempt like this it is more about mechanics and muscle memory, so I time myself eating small sweet peppers to get the chewing and swallowing down to automatic responses."
"I’ve been trying to advance the awareness and the excitement surrounding the super-hot chillies out there and showcase my amazing talent of consuming vast amounts of these incredible pods of pain in the fastest time possible." - Gregory Foster
Gregory also holds the record for the most Carolina Reaper chillies eaten in one minute – 120g in case you were wondering – which has stood for over five years.
"Professionally, I spent nearly 30 years working in restaurants developing my flavor awareness," said Gregory.
"I’ve always loved spicy food and have constantly tried to push my tolerance to the limit."
In addition to enjoying the flavour of these flaming chillies, Gregory is also interested in them from a horticultural perspective.
"I have been a gardener since childhood with a deep fascination for and love of Capsicums."
"Currently I own a hot sauce company, Inferno Farms, which allows me to live my passion for chillies in every way."
Congratulations to Gregory on his fiery achievement! Who knows, perhaps he’s set his sights on another chilli pepper record already…