Green cardamom is one of the most expensive spices in the world. Here’s why.

  • Green cardamom, known as the Queen of Spices, is the third most expensive spice in the world.
  • Just one kilogram of the spice can retail for $90.
  • The pods must be harvested by hand and dried for 18 hours before they can be sold.

Green cardamom is the third most expensive spice in the world, after saffron and vanilla. Just 100 grams of the spice can cost about $9. That's about $90 for a kilogram. But getting that little bit of cardamom requires a lot of work. Harvesters need to collect 6 kilograms of raw pods by hand to produce just 1 kilogram of green cardamom. But just because several pods from the same tree are ripe doesn't mean they all will be. This is why each pod must be plucked by hand. So why is it so hard to grow green cardamom? And is that what makes it so expensive?

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