ChilliBOM has completed the second ever publicly available Australian Hot Sauce Survey we had an amazing response this year with over 1,650 responses, uncovering even more of the hot sauce habits of the Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatic. Hot sauce continues to gain in popularity in Australia with a now cult following of the The Hot Ones You Tube show and the continued explosion of homemade Australian hot sauce brands like 13 Angry Scorpions, Red Clipper and Uncle Mungos alongside the classics like Melbourne Hot Sauce, Cobra Chilli and Chilli Willies. There has never been a better time to explore the world of hot sauce.
Survey Key FINDINGS:
- Five million Australian Adults eat hot sauce EVERY WEEK, which we've dubbed as the Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatic, and just over half a million Australians Adults eat hot Sauce EVERYDAY. These results are in line with our findings in 2018.
- Two-thirds of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are men . This is s slight increase from our 2019 results but half of all hot sauce fanatics are aged under 35 years old.
- Enjoying your hot sauce with a burger at dinner still rates at the top of the list. . 79% of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics enjoy hot sauce mostly with dinner but this has come down slightly from our 2018 survey with lunch time hot sauce consumption picking up the difference
- It's normal for most of our Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics to experience the burn of hot sauce at both ends. 50% told us that they have experiences the 'burning ring of fire' after eating hot sauce. When it comes to physical reactions to hot sauce the usual suspects like a runny nose, burning mouth, burning lips and sweating top the list for Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics but over half have suffered the dreaded 'ring of fire' and an unfortunate few have suffered extreme reactions like nausea, diarrhoea and vomiting.
- Dairy is the product of choice to quench the burn. Most of our Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are smart cookies with 50% reaching for some form of dairy product like milk, yoghurt or ice cream to help quench the fire of hot sauce when the burn gets too much to handle.
- Aussie hot sauce fanatics have confirmed that hot sauce is addictive! Scientists have proven that the physical reaction we have to chilli can be addictive and our hot sauce fanatics have confirmed it with the majority of them telling us that they have cravings for the spicy heat of hot sauce (73%).
Introducing the Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatic
As per our findings in 2018, close to 70% of Australian adults have eaten hot sauce in the last 12 months representing 13 Million Aussies. Just under half of these hot sauce consumers are eating hot sauce on a regular basis with 5 million Australian adults eating hot sauce at least once a week or more often. We've dubbed these amazing individuals the "AUSSIE HOT SAUCE FANATIC". We then have some absolute HOT SAUCE OBSESSIVES out there eating hot sauce every day with 550 thousand adults falling into this bucket.
And when it comes to enjoying hot sauce our Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics the men have edged ahead slightly over the last 2 years. With men representing 64% of hot sauce fanatics up from 59% in 2018.
Half of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are aged under 35 and when it comes to where our Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics live, NSW and Victoria have the highest absolute percentages which is line with having the highest populations across all states and territories.
Hot Sauce Eating Habits
Now we say that the Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatic eats hot sauce at least once a week, but most are even more fanatical than that, with the majority eating hot sauce multiple times a week and then a good proportion eating at least once or multiple times a day. And the true champions (or obsessives) are the 14% of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics who are eating hot sauce with every meal this is up from 12% in 2018...you champions!
It is probably no surprise that the majority of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are eating hot sauce most often with their dinner, but this is a shift from 2018 where there was 82% eating hot sauce at dinner and only 10% at lunch.
When it comes to what Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are eating hot sauce with Burgers tops the list followed by Grilled or Fried Chicken, Mexican, Pizza and Stir Fry to round out the top 5.
Can you handle the heat?
When it comes to how hot our Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics can handle their hot sauce, 42% are most often eating hot sauces that they rate as "HOT" or a 6 to 7 out of 10 on the heat scale. 11% of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics are extremely brave and opt for the EXTREME 10 out 10 hot sauces on a regular basis this is slightly lower than 2018 where there 15% of hot sauce fanatics eating extreme hot sauces.
The consequences of testing your limits when it comes to eating hot sauces is well known amongst us Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics ,so we asked again how bad those reactions get. It goes without saying that virtually all Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics suffer a runny nose the most and this is followed by the trademark burning mouth.
But over half of our hot sauce fanatics get to enjoy the effects of their hot sauce habits twice, suffering the dreaded 'Ring of Fire' the following day. For those of you that have experienced this then you know exactly what we are referring to, for those that haven't, well lets say its not a reaction you get from the hot sauce when you eat it, but one you suffer the following day when the hot sauce makes its way out the other end...see, you get to enjoy it twice!
For those of us who have taken the ultimate challenge and eaten the most extreme of hot sauces then we have experienced nausea, diarrhoea and vomiting.
And then there are the super heroes out there who have no physical reactions at all, representing 2% of Aussie Hot Sauce fanatics, they are dead-set legends!
Dairy is still the food or drink of choice to help reduce the burn with 50% of Aussie Hot Sauce fanatics reaching for some form of dairy product with milk being the number 1 burn-aid of choice.
Water and beer again make the top 3 go to drinks. We are just wired internally to extinguish fire with water and 14% of Aussie Hot Sauce Fanatics can't resist that urge, but we've told you before it is the less effective option; capsaicin, the chemical that gives chilli its burn, is an oil and we know that oil and water do not mix! As for beer...well you must be a glutton for punishment and just want to experience more pain as alcohol in general makes the heat effects even worse.
A fanatic for Hot Sauce
Over the last 2 years the attitudes of the hot sauce fanatic to their condiment of choice have not really changed. They're always looking for something new to try and they like to have hot sauce close at hand when food is served, even when they are eating out. They generally don't limit themselves to certain types of foods either, hot sauce can go on just about anything.
While the heat is one of the key reasons they love hot sauce so much, flavour does come first and it is not always about who can eat the hottest hot sauce.
And that's a wrap for 2020. A special thanks goes out to every one that supported the 2020 Australian Hot Sauce survey had over 1,650 participants, an amazing response!
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ChilliBOM is a hot sauce subscription company and hot sauce e-commerce store. The company’s website is dedicated to hot sauce fanatics and collectors, and ships products to people all over the world. Founded in 2016, ChilliBOM delivers its subscription packages to customers every three or six months. Customers can also buy one-off bottles of hot sauce to explore different flavours and grow their hot sauce collection.
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All data was collected in April 2020