The bell pepper is a cultivar group of the species Capsicum annuum. Cultivars of the plant produce fruits in different colours, including red, orange, green and purple. Bell peppers are sometimes grouped with less pungent pepper varieties as "sweet peppers". While they are fruits—botanically classified as berries—they are used as a vegetable ingredient or side dish. Peppers are native to Mexico, Central America, northern South America. Pepper seeds were imported to Spain in 1493 and spread through Europe and Asia; the mild bell pepper cultivar was developed in Szeged, Hungary. Preferred growing conditions for bell peppers include warm, moist soil in a temperature range of 21 to 29 °C; the name pepper was given by Europeans. At that time, black pepper, from the unrelated plant Piper nigrum originating from India, was a prized condiment; the name pepper was applied in Europe to all known spices with a hot and pungent taste and was therefore extended to genus Capsicum when it was introduced from the Americas.
The most used name of the plant family, chile, is of Mexican origin, from the Nahuatl word chilli. The terms bell pepper, pepper or sweet pepper, capsicum are used for any of the large bell-shaped peppers, regardless of their color; the vegetable is referred to as a "pepper", or additionally by color. In the Midland region of the U. S. bell peppers when stuffed and pickled are sometimes called mangoes. In some languages, the term paprika, which has its roots in the word for pepper, is used for both the spice and the fruit – sometimes referred to by their colour; the bell pepper is called "パプリカ" or "ピーマン" in Japan. In Switzerland, the fruit is called peperone, the Italian name of the fruit. In France, it is called poivron, with the same root as piment. In Spain it is called the masculine form of the traditional spice, pimienta. In South Korea, the word "피망" refers to green bell peppers, whereas "파프리카" refers to bell peppers of other colors. In Sri Lanka it is called maalu miris; the most common colors of bell peppers are green, yellow and red.
More brown, white and dark purple peppers can be seen, depending on the variety. Most unripe fruits are green or, less pale yellow or purple. Red bell peppers are ripened green peppers, although the Permagreen variety maintains its green color when ripe; as such, mixed colored peppers exist during parts of the ripening process. Like the tomato, bell peppers are botanical fruits but culinary vegetables. Pieces of bell pepper are used in garden salads and as toppings on pizza or cheesesteaks. There are many varieties of stuffed peppers prepared using halved bell peppers. Bell peppers may be used in the production of the spice paprika. Bell peppers are 94% water, 5% carbohydrates, negligible fat and protein, they are rich sources of vitamin C, containing 97% of the Daily Value in a 100 gram reference amount. Red bell peppers have more vitamin C content than green bell peppers, their vitamin B6 content is moderate, with no other micronutrients present in significant amounts. The bell pepper is the only member of the genus Capsicum that does not produce capsaicin, a lipophilic chemical that can cause a strong burning sensation when it comes in contact with mucous membranes.
They are thus scored in the lowest level of the Scoville scale. This absence of capsaicin is due to a recessive form of a gene that eliminates the compound and the "hot" taste associated with the rest of the genus Capsicum; this recessive gene is overwritten in the Mexibelle pepper, a hybrid variety of bell pepper that produces small amounts of capsaicin. Sweet pepper cultivars produce non-pungent capsaicinoids. China is the world's largest producer of bell and chile peppers, followed by Mexico, Turkey and the United States of America
On January 2, Benchmark crude fell by the most in one day since November 2012 to close at $95.44. Brent crude was $107.78. Gas was $3.33. With the Iran agreement and increased production from Libya and the North Sea, Benchmark oil was around $92 on January 13 and Brent crude was $105.98. After good economic news from Japan, Benchmark crude fell from its highest close of 2014, $98.23 on January 30. Brent crude fell to $107.25. The difference between the two fell below $10 for the first time since November due to cold weather in the United States which resulted in high heating oil demand. Early in February gas was $3.27. Cold weather led to the price of oil staying above $100 for most of February, but lower prices were expected. With United States fourth quarter economic growth expected to be lower than an early estimate, Benchmark crude fell on February 27 to $102.40, with Brent crude reaching $108.61. On March 24, due to the dispute over Crimea, problems in Libya, the Houston Ship Channel collision, Benchmark crude rose above $100 and Brent crude rose to $107.41.
Economic problems in China kept prices from going higher. In the week, good economic news from the United States, lower oil supplies in Oklahoma and a force majeure by Shell Nigeria pushed prices higher, to $102.12 for Benchmark crude and $108.29 for Brent. On April 7, Benchmark crude fell below $101 and Brent crude fell to $105.64 with news that Libya might open more terminals in May, but more Ukraine problems pushed the prices back up on April 8. Gas was $3.59, matching the level in 2013. Continued Ukraine problems pushed oil higher on April 24, with Benchmark crude at $101.94 and Brent crude at $110.33, though an April 23 report said U. S. oil supplies were higher than expected. The price of gas was $3.68.5, the highest since March 2013. On April 30, Benchmark crude dropped below $100 for the first time in three weeks as oil supplies continued to rise and the unusually cold winter resulted in negative U. S. economic news. Gas was up 14 cents for the most in three years. More Ukraine trouble pushed Benchmark crude above $100 and Brent crude over $108 on May 12, further problems in Libya helped push Benchmark crude over $102 and Brent crude over $110 by May 15, though negative economic news in the U.
S. and an unexpected increase in oil stockpiles pushed Benchmark crude back down temporarily. Continued concerns over Ukraine and Libya pushed oil back above $104; the price of gas was $3.65. Trouble in Iraq resulted in higher prices for gas in June. West Texas crude reached $106 and Brent crude $115.75. At the end of the month Benchmark crude was just above $105 while Brent crude fell below $113; the price of gas was $3.66. After three weeks of going down, U. S. crude fell below $100 for the first time since May on July 15. However, with Middle East and Ukraine problems sending oil higher, Benchmark crude finished July 18 just above $103, with Brent crude staying above $107. With low demand and plentiful supplies, despite good economic news from China and the United States, Brent crude fell below $107 on July 24, U. S. crude dropped to $102.10. On July 28, gas was $3.52, down five cents from a week earlier, due to refiners cutting prices. Two weeks gas was $3.48, less than a year earlier. And on August 14, light sweet oil was $95.58, the lowest since January, while Brent crude reached $102.01, the lowest since June, after falling the most in one day since January.
Production in Libya was up, economic slowdowns were expected in Europe and China, making lower prices likely. As of Labor Day, gas was $3.41, 18 cents lower than in 2013. Low demand and high North American production cancelled out effects of troubles in the Middle East and Ukraine. West Texas crude was below $94 on August 27 and Brent crude below $103. On October 16, West Texas crude fell below $80 for the first time in more than two years, while Brent crude reached $82.60, the lowest since November 2010. OPEC Members were not expected to act as increases in the U. S. supply resulting from high tight oil production added to a worldwide surplus. On October 31, the average price of gas reached $3 and was expected to go below that figure for the first time since December 2010. Demand for oil was down and there were many new sources. United States oil production was up 70% since 2008, Iraq and Canada were producing more. According to the Lundberg survey released December 7, gas was down 12 cents from two weeks earlier to $2.72.
Demand was low while production was high, the strong dollar contributed. With demand low in China and Europe and OPEC deciding not to cut back, West Texas Intermediate reached $63.50 on December 8, the lowest since July 2009, while Brent crude reached $66.90, a level not seen since October 2009. After Saudi Arabia oil minister Ali Al-Naimi said OPEC members could not cut production on their own, oil prices rose December 18 but finished the day lower with Benchmark crude at $54.11 and Brent crude $59.27, both the lowest since May 2009. Gas was $2.49 a gallon. Days gas was $2.38, the lowest in five years, after 89 straight days of going down, the longest continuous decline according to AAA. The price of oil was down 50% since April, while gas had fallen 36%. Economic problems in Europe and Asia, high gas mileage, a strong dollar, higher U. S. production and no action by OPEC have been credited. On January 16, Brent crude rose as high as $50.16 before falling back, the International Energy Agency said production was down due to lower prices and higher prices were late in 2015.
West Texas Intermediate, down 10% for the month, closed at $48.48 on January 14 after closing at $45.89 the previous day. Gas was $2.12. After the January 23 death of King Abdullah led to concerns about the future, West Texas Intermediate climbed a
Catherine Hunter is a Canadian poet, editor and critic. Hunter received a BA from the University of Winnipeg and an MA and PhD from the University of Victoria, she is a faculty member at the University of Winnipeg where she teaches English and creative writing courses. Her first published poems appeared in the Malahat Review in 1978. Hunter's writing has since appeared in Prairie Fire, Essays on Canadian Writing, Canadian Literature and a number of other literary periodicals. Hunter received the McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award for Latent Heat, a collection of poetry, she has edited books of poetry for the Muses' Company Press. Hunter's most recent work of fiction is the murder mystery novel Queen of Diamonds. Published by Turnstone Press imprint Ravenstone, Queen of Diamonds is a mystery thriller about fake psychics and their wealthy clientele, set in Winnipeg, Manitoba, it was launched and became available to the public in November 2006. Necessary Crimes - 1988 Lunar Wake - 1994 Latent Heat - 1997 After Light - 2015 Where Shadows Burn - 1999 The Dead of Midnight - 2001 ) The First Early Days of My Death - 2002 Queen of Diamonds - 2006 Before the First Word: The Poetry of Lorna Crozier - 2005