February 2015

Hot-Headz was one of the first in the UK selling Hot Sauces, one of the first to open a web site selling Hot Sauces, now keeping up with the latest technology they have just relaunched their site with an all new shopping experience.

New Hot Headz Site

All the old accounts should still be live, but things should now be faster and a easier to manage for this rapidly growing company.

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One of the great things about the UK chilli scene is the social interaction within the community. Be it face-to-face get-togethers at the various festivals throughout the growing season or online through social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter, individuals come together to share their enthusiasm for all things chilli.

#ChilliHour

Sheena Horner from Galloway Chillies, a regular contributor on social media, had interacted with other individuals on Twitter as part the #ScotFood hour, a regular chat session on Twitter that shared food & drink experiences in Scotland. Noticing the success of these events and being aware that there were many Twitter users across the spectrum who shared a common interest in chillies, Sheena thought a similar chilli themed chat session would be a great way for these enthusiasts to come together to share advice & knowledge. And thus #ChilliHour was born.

#ChilliHour has been running now for over a year and takes place on Twitter every third Monday in a month between 9-10pm (GMT). Each month there is a series of set questions covering a variety of chilli related topics such as growing, harvesting, cooking, and sourcing products. There’s also a good dose of humour too with past questions having covered more amusing topics such as chilli challenges & mishaps.

To participate in #ChilliHour all someone needs is a Twitter account. Users then simply follow the hosts for #ChilliHour (who tweet out the questions during the session) and ensure they add the hashtag #ChilliHour to their tweets. This allows other users to easily see all of the related tweets being posted & tagged ‘ChilliHour’ through use of the hashtag search feature in Twitter.

Whilst Sheena initially hosted the event herself, as user participation has grown during the year, so has the need for additional hosts.

The current hosts are:
• Sheena from Galloway Chillies (@Gallowaychilli)
• Myself (@Norn_IronMan)
• Ivor Davies from Bountiful Seeds (@Bountifulseeds)
• Chris Saunders (@TheLurch) and
• Lewis & Katie from The ChilliGeeks (@TheChilliGeeks)

It’s not essential to have an interest in chilli to participate in #ChilliHour but it can help. Neither is it necessary to be based in the UK, with users from American, The Republic of Ireland and France all participating regularly in #ChilliHour. #ChilliHour is simply about having an hour of lighted hearted social interaction on Twitter for all things chilli.

For more information about #ChilliHour visit Sheena’s Blog ChilliBabies, where each month she posts the latest questions. Suggestions for future topics or questions are always welcome too – just let any of the hosts know should you have any ideas.

P.S. Follow this link to find out when the next #chillihour is.

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My wife and I have been running our catering business since 1990. Although we love what we do, my real underlying passion has been all things Chilies for around 20 years, yes I’m what’s known as a “Chillihead” With this passion (obsession maybe) we have decided to diversify and create “Devonchilliman

In 2013 I went from growing around a dozen chili plants at home to growing 200+ plants and rented 5 x plots in a local community shared glasshouse in Teignbridge.I had a very successful harvest of which I decided to use the chillies in our produce & started to make products with them, we then decided to have a catering unit wrapped in a chilli theme and it’s first outing was at “The Great Dorset Chilli Festival” of which was a huge and enjoyable success. The products we sold were ChilliSteakburgers, Chilli Hot Dogs, Pakora Battered Jalapenos. We almost sold out of our entire stock of Jalapenos in the first day but luckily DARTH NAGA and JAMIE SYTHES were at hand & rushed off to the Wiltshire Chilli Farm to harvest more !.

DevonChilliman Signs of lifeI now rent a 36 meter glasshouse and in 2014 grew 600+ chili plants and now have a website which is www.Devonchilliman.co.uk of which I sold fresh UK grown chilies and sent out via post/courier to my customers. I have just started as of 14th January 2015 sowing my seeds for the 2015 growing season. Last year I soaked the seeds in a week black tea solution as I heard that the tannin in tea softens the seed casing and then I planted them into compost in my Propagator. This year I have soaked some but not all, I currently have almost 400 x seeds in “GRODAN” cubes of which I soaked the cubes in a week solution of “Canna Start” 1ml/1Litre of water they are now in the Propagator set at 27°C and they are starting to germinate already. This I find the exciting part of the season!

After trailing products from Greenhouse Sensations and Growth Technology I am starting to experiment with more advanced propagation techniques this year, namely the hydropod an aeroponic unit.

I plan to move the seedlings when the first set of true leaves appear to the hydropod and am looking forward to the results.

Progress will be updated each month in my column on the ChileFoundry.

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