Cooking nowadays is unimaginable without adding spices, aromatic substances that give our dishes flavor or aroma many of us enjoy. Whether dry or fresh or in the form of a fruit, bark, rhizome, seed, or herb, they’re sure to transform your eating experience.
So, let’s dive into the world of spices and find out which are the oldest, the most popular, and so much more!
What Are the Top 10 Most Used Spices?
Though there are stark differences among cuisines of the world in terms of their spice preferences, the following 10 spices stood out as the overall favorites in terms of popularity and sales:
Revealing Statistics and Facts About the Most Used Spices
Join us as we reveal the current spice market size, top global brands, top-selling spices, etc.
Black pepper and cumin seem to be the most popular spices in the world.
(Reference) (Urban Cultivator)
While some sources (e.g., Kit Stone’s infographic) list cumin as the most popular spice, others list pepper as the first ranked. One is for sure — the two are some of the world’s top-selling spices.
There are over 600 varieties of pepper.
However, only a few members of the Piper genus are actually used as spices.
Piper nigrum is one of the most common pepper varieties on the market.
There are four types of this pepper depending on the maturation degree and the type of processing, and they include black pepper, green pepper, red pepper, and white pepper.
Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices in the world.
The word about cinnamon production and trading dates as far back as the first century AD and Pliny’s written records. It was also used by the ancient Egyptians in embalming mixtures, etc.
The global cinnamon market was worth $760.2 million in 2018.
(Grand View Research)
Cinnamon is popular in a plethora of other industries besides the food and beverage industry, including the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.
A pound of Kashmiri saffron may cost a whopping $1,500.
Therefore, it doesn’t come as a surprise that saffron is the world’s most expensive spice.
Five companies dominate the global spices industry.
- McCormick & Company, Inc. ($5.6 billion in revenue in 2020)
- Podravka ($537.4 million in revenue in 2020)
- Sauer Brands ($387 million in revenue in 2020)
- Frontier Co-Op ($179 million in revenue in 2020)
- Everest ($176.48 million revenue in 2020)
The global spice industry was worth $8.4 billion in 2018.
The industry was projected to further grow at a CAGR of 4.8% between 2019 and 2025 due to the increasing demand for spices, which is a result of expanding urbanization.
The US spice and culinary herb market was worth about $9.27 billion in 2021.
The market has been steadily increasing since 2014, and, according to the estimates, it’s bound to continue in that trend, reaching $10.81 billion by 2027.
Spices have been making our lives better (whether by making our dining experience more appetizing or by treating common ailments) for millennia, and they’re here to stay.
We hope this article helped you learn something new about the aromatic world of herbs and spices, their popularity, and what the future holds for them.