I have been warned several times about Striking up a conversation with Jim Duffy but hearing all the good things that he has brought to the world of Hot sauce I decided to contact him. Hell… It can’t be any worse than spending 4 hours on the phone with Al Buddah. Right?…
This year I will be putting Jim’s peppers plants to the test with some nice Jersey heat. Peppers and More will be following these plants from day one til the first pepper pops up. This year Jim ha sent me one of each of the following….Choc Bhut, Yellow 7 Pot, 7 Pot Jonah, Yellow Scorpion, Jamaican Red and Yellow Mushroom, Black habanero, Pumpkin habanero, Devil’s Tongue Red, Malaysian Goronong, Naga Morich, and Moruga Scorpion.Check back to see the progress of Jim’s Plants…..
 Jim, before I get into the juicy questions that I have for you could you tell our readers about yourself and company…..

My Company Refining Fire Chiles is a provider of the Rarest and Hottest Chile seeds, Plants and Fresh Chiles. I sell seeds all year round, plants April through July and Fresh Chiles September through November. My clients for chiles are some sauce makers and a few restaurants but I also set aside some for the public. I have been growing chiles since 2004. A portion of my profits support Underprivileged Youth in East County San Diego. We do this at 4 Youth centers called Youth Venture. The site is www.yvcenters.com. The other groups I am working with is Restoration Ranch which is a recovery program for adult addictions. I am teaching them to grow chiles so they will have more money to fund their Out Reach to men that need help. See them here at http://www.restorationranch.com/ And now recently another program that works with growing plants and produce has come to my attention. They do this to help adults with physical and mental disabilities. It is called St. Madeliene Sophie’s Center. Sales of their plants help them to help these people. So I recently donated a few hundred chile plants to them to sell. I look forward to helping them more in the future. Their site is www.stmsc.org All in all the more money I make with chiles the more I can help others. To me life is about changing others lives. Not just what I can get for myself. Whether you believe in my Faith or not I was created for a purpose and I am thankful that God is using chiles for that purpose.
If you could only grow one Pepper….What would it be?
I would have to say any of the Trinidad 7 Pot’s. These include red varieties like the 7 Pot Jonah and 7 Pot Barrackapore. Yellow 7 Pot (pineapple like flavor) and 7 Pot Douglah or Chocolate 7 Pot. They all have a nice fruity like flavor and are smoother tasting than the Trinidad Scorpion. But in heat level just a little less than a Scorpion but hotter than a Ghost chile.
Favorite Hot Sauce?
I actually cannot say just one. So I will name my top three if that’s okay. My top 3 are Stinger from Zane and Zacks Honey company. I use it on lots of foods but mostly on shrimp like a shrimp cocktail sauce. Another sauce is use on eggs, Mexican food even burgers is CaJohn’s Holy Jalokia sauce. I am not a fan of Bhut Jolokia sauces but this one is balanced with good heat. And of course I like 1498 Trinidad Scorpion sauce by Heartbreaking Dawns. Again I use it on everything and like the balance between sweet and heat
I know that you have heard me rant and rave about the Scovie awards over the last few years. My main problem with awards such as the Scovies is that it is all about the money and not about the industry. I would like to get your thoughts on this…
  I will tell you that I entered my website in the promotional category in 2009 and took second. The First place winner had a site that could have been made by a child. I entered again in 2010 and did not even place. The websites I competed against were not even near the quality of mine. So no more Scovies for me as it is not judged but I think they pick certain people to win so they then can get them as paid advertisers later on. Same with sauces. True some sauces that won in the past were good. But now many products that win are average at best and the good sauce makers don’t even enter so Scovies in my opinion have no validity. I will tell your readers that the best way to find out about new products is forget show awards and come on your site or a site like Scott Roberts or I Love It Spicy. It is these sites that give honest open opinions on spicy products. It is here that fair reviews by real chileheads help the consumer to find out what is a good product to try. I never bought a sauce because of an award. I bought sauces because of what I learned on the Hot sauce blogs. And 9 times out of 10 I got products that I like and use all the time. I usually make my own sauces. But I enjoy the new sauces I have now so much that I am too lazy to make mine. A special thanks to you, Al and Scott for putting your efforts in informing consumers like me about great products!

 As of late it seems like everyone and there mother is coming out saying they have  the hottest Pepper in the world What do you make of all this?

Unless they do testing by an Independent third party lab that is qualified it’s not official. Guinness is nothing more than a record keeper with their own rules. I believe in the standards of the Chile Pepper Institute. Now I do give credibility to the Trinidad Scorpion because we ran multiple tests and third party tests on it and the Moruga Scorpion last year and we broke 1,400,000 with the Moruga and 1,300,000 with the Trinidad Scorpion. So I do not doubt the recent test by Neil of the Hippy Seed Company being that high. I have my seeds being grown out this year using 4 varieties by Bosland and the Institute for plant studies and heat testing so we should have better scientific numbers this season. As far as the Naga Viper and Infinity pepper go a new pepper variety takes 7 generations to make. So the two year development claimed by these guys in England is scientifically impossible. And I have never seen any pictures of plants so it is just a Fairy Tale to make more money and take advantage of the public.
Where do you see your Youth Venture heading in the next few years?
Youth Venture is now in Kenya and a few other countries. Getting kids off the street and getting them a belief in God when they don’t have a belief in anything in their life is a great cause. A lot of these kids have never been loved even by their own parents so they turn to addictions and gangs for identity. Any Church or organization that wants to duplicate what we do is welcome to contact us. I support Youth Venture with my business. Anyone can donate through the site. If we don’t help unwanted kids we will face more crime and decay in our communities. The kids are our future.
 Here are a few of Jim’s plants that will surely burn the hell out of many of my friends. Check back with us for more up dates on the progress of these Peppers..