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Scoville Units for Measuring Chile Heat

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Capsaicin is a pungent lipophilic vanilloid compound contained in chile peppers that gives the "heat" experienced on ingestion. Scoville developed a subjective test of chile heat in 1912 based on taste testing by a panel of 5 humans given pepper extracts. HPLC is now used to directly measure the amount of capsaicin present.

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