Pepper festival heats up Kingsport farmer's market

PHOTO: Samantha Zarek

KINGSPORT, Tenn. - The fourth annual pepper festival brought the heat to the Kingsport Farmer's Market today. A variety of peppers and homemade salsas and hot sauces were featured. They ranged in heat level from the bell pepper to the Carolina reaper-- that's the hottest pepper in the world. Other events of the day included the "Miss Pepper Pageant", games for the kids, eating contests for the adults, and a guest appearance by pepper expert, Johnny Scoville.

"They've got tomato fest, they've got all kinds of other vegetables, why not the lowly pepper, so we're trying to elevate that," says master gardener Doug Hilton.

"Peppers have become very popular. They're very very healthy, there's as much vitamin C in one pepper as there is in three oranges. The flavor range is just incredible," says pepper expert, Johnny Scoville.

Scoville's grandfather developed the "Scoville Scale," used to measure the heat level of a pepper.