In the Autumn of 2019, we introduced a Reaper Challenge League Table to our website. The Carolina Reaper is recognised by Guinness as the official world’s hottest pepper on Earth. It was a challenge that naturally found its way to us, as people took it upon themselves to eat as many of these brutal chillies as they could, in one sitting, with no liquid or food relief.
We opened up our League Table and people started to submit their endeavours. The incredible super-human Atomik Menace sits on top of our table with an incredible 122 Reapers, weighing 706 grams, consumed in one sitting, on camera, with no liquid or food relief between his first bite of pepper until the last gulp of the fiery fruit! You can see our full League Table >>> HERE <<<
As the submissions started to roll in, it occurred to us that we should set out some guidelines, or rules to put it more formally, to ensure that people who suffer the pain do not suffer the injustice. For example, we specified that to be on our website there should be two people present who are known in the chilli community, and not picked up from the local pub or coffee shop! This type of challenge could easily be faked and we want to ensure that people do not corrupt our League and that honest people do not suffer through injustice.
Also, and more importantly, there is an element of safety that should be taken into consideration. We insist that a person who is lucid and capable of First Aid is present. Many chilli product producers would be able to help a person suffering from extreme chilli inflicted discomfort, so we tried to cover the bases there with the aforementioned rules.
The problem we had when we generated this table, was that it seemed unfair for honest people who are well known to us and others in the chilli community, to have their extremely brave challenges excluded simply because they did the challenge in good faith BEFORE we introduced a set of rules. Consequently, we allowed retrospective entries. In between our cut-off date that we set that meant submissions that did NOT adhere to our rules would not be permitted (11th November 2019) and the date of this article, there was some misunderstanding with certain rules. For example, we had one submission that included a wife and mother, who worked part-time in a hot sauce company as witnesses, when we prefer the witnesses not to be so closely connected to the chilli-head in question.
Also, we had an incidence whereby there were people off camera unannounced who would have counted as witnesses, but there was an oversight on the part of the applicant in identifying them on camera.
In turn, we decided to extend the deadline for Reaper Challenges that did not conform to our rules. The official deadline has now been set to Monday 6th January 2020.
ANY REAPER CHALLENGES THAT TOOK PLACE BETWEEN 11th NOVEMBER 2019 AND 6th JANUARY 2020 ARE NOW ELIGIBLE FOR SUBMISSION subject to our usual checks.
Any submissions for the Reaper Challenge must now adhere to our rules strictly, which can be found at the end of this article.
It is our intention to dissuade people to do such a challenge alone in their homes and without the necessary safety measures. If you think of a conventional chilli-eating competition, they normally take place at festivals with First Aid specialists and lots of people around who can not only help in emergencies but also keep watch to ensure that rules are not broken and people cannot cheat. It is our mission to try and shift this type of challenge, the Reaper Challenge, away from private homes and people doing it alone or with just a friend or family member, and bring it to the stages of festivals and events where they can be enjoyed, refereed and most importantly, done safely.
The Official Reaper Challenge L.O.F. Rules
As at 11th November 2019.
This is a new League Of Fire League Table Challenge. The 4th League Table so far to appear on our website.
Put simply, an entrant endeavours to eat as many Carolina Reaper Peppers as they possibly can in one sitting without any food or fluid!
- The challenge must be videoed without any edits. Live-streams are acceptable but we reserve the right to reject an application if there is a lot of buffering due to poor internet connection. It is advised to always have back-up unedited video evidence also.
- The Carolina Reapers should be whole fresh pods. Not dried, mixed with other peppers, in a mash, cut or sliced, or in hot sauce, etc.
- There is NO AFTERBURN time for this challenge. As soon as a person announces they have finished, or words to that effect, or has food or fluid to help relieve the pain, the challenge is finished. If a person says they have finished, but changes their mind, they may continue as long as they have had no food or fluid.
- The supplier of the peppers must be disclosed so we can confirm the credibility of the peppers and the grower/supplier.
- The speed of the challenge, from the first bite of the first pepper to the moment the contestant officially stops or has food/fluid, should be recorded as it could be used to judge who sits higher in the L.O.F. League Table should two or more people consume the same amount of peppers.
- The weight of the peppers (with the weight of the stalks subtracted afterwards) should also be recorded as this factor may separate two or more contestants in their respective league positions should those two or more contestants consume the same amount of chillies.
- The minimum number of peppers to qualify is 5. There will be a limit of 200 peppers. The L.O.F. will not acknowledge any challenge that goes beyond the 200 pepper limit. For example, If a contestant eats 205 peppers, we will record it as ‘200 pepper limit reached’. The L.O.F. do not want contestants to suffer possible injury from any challenge.
- If the challenge is not being undertaken at an official event, It is mandatory that at least 2 people known in the chilli community are present to ‘referee’ a L.O.F. Reaper Challenge. The two chilli community officials shall be present to witness the challenge from start to finish to authenticate as well as to ensure the safety of the person undertaking the challenge – these could be chilli growers, sauce producers, or any other well-regarded and responsible persons within the chilli community. This is to make sure that everything is done correctly, safely and responsibly. We don’t want people to go overboard and risk injury and so the point of having referees/witnesses there will also serve as a preventative measure alongside authenticity.
- It is also advised that a person is present who has first aid experience and has an understanding of the effects capsaicin has on the human body and therefore can be on hand to help and offer a remedy to the person doing the challenge if need be. The L.O.F. will not consider any application from the date of this rule-set from any person alone in a room with no other person present for safety reasons.
- To combat cheating in this challenge and to remove doubt of any camera trickery, a person should not do this challenge alone specifically or in the presence of just one or even two people who are friends and not known in the chilli community. Cheating in a contest of this nature is extremely unfair on other people who have done the challenge honestly. If anybody is caught cheating they will be banned from the L.O.F. completely.
- A L.O.F. Reaper Challenge will also qualify if it is undertaken at a public event or festival and officiated by the respective organiser. The presence of a public crowd whether small or large would suffice as witness to the challenge, as well as sufficient to ensure the safety of the person doing the challenge.
- It is advised that an applicant contacts us before they do the challenge with the details of when and where and if not at an official event then the names and credentials of the referees/witnesses who will be present must be provided so that we can check their prospective challenge will qualify for entry into the L.O.F. and check all the information supplied before sanctioning their challenge.
- League of Fire accepts no responsibility for distress or injury obtained while undertaking this challenge.
- These rules are subject to change at any time without notice – please do check back here every once in a while.
As at 5th January 2020
- A participant’s family member(s) qualify as first aiders if trained but do not qualify as referees/witnesses to Reaper Challenges that are not held at official events/festivals. If the challenge is not being undertaken at an official event, It is mandatory that at least 2 people known in the chilli community are present to ‘referee’ a L.O.F. Reaper Challenge (who are not family members).
The two chilli community officials shall be present to witness the challenge from start to finish to authenticate as well as to ensure the safety of the person undertaking the challenge – these could be chilli growers, sauce producers, chilli YouTubers or any other well-regarded and responsible persons within the chilli community. This is to make sure that everything is done correctly, safely and responsibly. We don’t want people to go overboard and risk injury and so the point of having referees/witnesses there will also serve as a preventative measure alongside authenticity.