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Native FoodsAustralian Native Foods

Plant Profiles

Mountain Pepper

Mountain Pepper shrubCommon Names & Species:
Mountain Pepper (Tasmannia lanceolata). A related species, Dorrigo Pepper (Tasmannia stipitata) is also used to a lesser extent.

Family:
Winteraceae

Native To:
Cool, moist, elevated areas in Tasmania and south-east Australia.
>> Virtual Herbarium

Habit:
Understorey shrub of 45 metres in lower altitudes. Small tree but more often a shrub in higher altitudes. Female and Male trees needed for production of berries.

Part Used:
Leaves and fruit.
Leaves: aromatic dark green and shiny.
Fruit: pea sized, purple-black berries.

Mountain Pepper ground leaf and dried berriesFlavour:
Hot pepper/chilli type flavour.

Food Use:
Savoury spice.

Current Retail Product Categories:
Dried spice, mustard, dipping sauce, essential oil, liquer.

Food Quality & Safety Issues:
Currently there is no industry-wide product description or quality standards developed or published for this crop, though individual market channel groups are likely to be working to in-house standards

Crop collection, production and handling systems will eventually require the implementation of HACCP-based food safety systems.

Wild Harvest/Cultivated Supplies:
Most supplies come from wild harvest, with cultivation increasing.

Wild Harvest Locations:
Natural or regrowth stands in Tasmania and Victoria.

Cultivation Locations:
Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia.

Approx Wholesale ('Farm Gate') Prices:
Berries: Whole dried $72/kg.
              Dried and ground: $76/kg
              Fresh frozen: $36/kg
Leaf: Dried ground $58/kg.
         Whole fresh frozen: $15/kg

Current Volumes Traded:
2.5-3.0 tonnes of leaf per annum.
Berry trade is very volatile, but in the order of a few hundred kilograms per annum.

Mountain Pepper leaves


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