Considered one of the world’s oldest spice, the use of cardamom dates back to at least 4000 years. It was used in different parts of the world for its medicinal properties. Cardamom contains chemicals that can treat intestinal spasms, kill bacteria, reduce swelling and help the immune system.
It is also used for infections like common cold, cough, bronchitis, sore mouth and throat, urinary problems, epilepsy, headache, and high blood pressure. Cardamom is used as a spice in foods. It is also used in cosmetics like soaps, creams, and perfumes. Kerala being the home to the queen has all the prerequisites for the best quality production and export of cardamom. The cardamom pods are harvested at 30 to 40-day intervals. Harvesting at the correct stage of maturity is of at most importance to produce high-quality cardamom capsules. Fully ripe and mature fruits are only harvested. After harvesting, the freshly harvested capsules need to be cleaned from dirt. Cardamom can be cured by two methods. Sun drying and Conventional curing. As the name suggests, sun drying involves directly drying cardamom under sunlight. While the conventional method involves a masonry structure consisting of two apartments, a curing room, and a furnace room. The whole process of curing of cardamom capsules takes about 28 to 36 hours reducing the moisture from 80% to 8-12% at an optimum temperature and retaining green color to the maximum extent. In general, the quality of capsules cured by this method is very good. Community curing is cheap and less polluting.