There are many kinds of red chili pepper but only one species can legitimately be called 'Takanotsume'. I'm in love with Takanotsume (the Japanese Hottest Chili pepper)  A famous scholar in the Edo Period said, 'Takanotsume is lovely in its shape, color, and aroma.'Takanotsume is a species of red chili pepper just three centimeters in length. The shape of a Takanotsume pod reminds us of the claw of a hawk and its aroma is like that of fruit. The red color of its pod beautifully contrasts with its green stalk. Gennai Hiraga, a doctor and scholar in the Edo Period researched as many as 72 species of red chili peppers and described his findings with many pictures in a book titled 'Banshoufu (Pepper Encyclopedia). He said in that book, 'Takanotsume is very small but has a very lovely shape. Furthermore, it is the best of all red chili peppers.' This shows how much Japanese people have loved Takanotsume's color, shape, and aroma since ancient times. Takanotsume is very spicy, and its spiciness is said to be about three times that of the most ordinary red chili pepper, Tentaka(mostly produced overseas).  Harvesting Takanotsume takes a lot of labor and effort.  Though the Takanotsume species of red chili pepper used to be very popular in the past, it has become a very rare species. It is not too much to say that it has become an endangered plant species. The reason is obvious. Takanotsume's pod is smaller and is difficult to pick. The time and effort it takes to harvest Takanotsume is enormous, compared to other species of red chili pepper, so farmers have given up Takanotsume in favor of other species for economic reasons. Preserving Takanotsume and handing down its value to the next generation. Although no farmers cultivate Takanotsume species of red chili pepper in surrounding areas, Yamatsu continues to use domestic Takanotsume as its ingredient, maintaining its century-old tradition. Of course it is not easy to find good domestic Takanotsume. Mr. Tsujita says, 'Takanotsume went out of Japan and now is grown overseas, too. But it is no longer Takanotsume because it has slightly changed it original flavor and spiciness by crossbreeding. So we cannot use such produce. We stick to domestically grown Takanotsume. 'So he made an arrangement with farmers nationwide who support his idea that Takanotsume native to Japan should be preserved. He even made a contract that Yamatsu exclusively buys all Takanotsume cultivated by the farmers.This way, Yamatsu proudly uses domestically grown Takanotsume in its various products.