A family from Cwmbran are celebrating after receiving a Guinness World Record Certificate for growing the world’s heaviest chilli pepper.
The Fortey family put their record breaker on the scales at the 2017 Malvern Show. It weighed 0.348 kilograms. The official recognition arrived in the post a few weeks ago when Kevin Fortey opened an envelope containing the official certificate.
The certificate names the talented growers, Marjorie his mother, Gareth his brother and Jamie his son.
He said: “It was a real surprise when the chilli hit the scales. ITV were there filming so there was a lot of pressure. When it hit the scales there was a sudden pause and an OMG moment. It takes dedication and a real partnership to achieve a record. Our dad is watching over us with a big smile on his face.”
His father, Mike Fortey, was a key figure in giant vegetable growing. In the 1980s he started the British National Pumpkin Championships and the Mill Tavern, a Cwmbran pub (now demolished), was the venue for giant vegetable competitions.
It’s the second time the Fortey name has been in the Guinness Book of World Records. In 2015 they grew the world’s longest radish.
Kevin said: “To see our family on the Guinness World Record certificate is a fitting tribute to our dad who started off giant vegetable growing in Cwmbran in the 1980s. It’s now a worldwide phenomenon. When we opened up the certificate it was a real proud moment for us all.”
“The chilli was left to dry so that the seeds could develop. The seeds are almost ready to be germinated for the 2018 season. The skin of the chilli was used by Jamie, my son, to make a chilli. He’s getting to be pretty handy in the kitchen
“Just like our dad did, we work hard to promote the world of giant veg and to develop new giant varieties for others to enjoy and grow. This world record shows what hard work and dedication can do.”
Learn how to grow a chilli pepper (and other vegetables)
Visit http://www.giantveg.co.uk to get tips on growing giant veg and buy seeds from some of their award-winning vegetables. There is also a thriving Facebook community page at @Giantvegcommunity and a Facebook group at @giantvegetablecommunity