Piper longum, “Long pepper” in English and “Poivrier long” in French, belongs to the Piperaceae botanical family. Native to South Asia, it is a climbing shrub with stems up to 3 m long, growing in shady places and in rainforests.
The dried, unripe berries are used as a condiment in curries and are an ingredient of the Moroccan spice mixtures 'ras el hanout' and 'felfla harra'.
In traditional Chinese medicine, the fruit is used to treat stomach chills, vomiting, acid regurgitation, headache and rhinitis. In Ayurvedic medicine it is used to treat colds, asthma, bronchitis, arthritis, rheumatism, lumbago, sciatica, epilepsy, indigestion and wind. Externally, it is used to treat toothache.
Among its main constituents are alkaloids and related compounds, mostly piperine; lignans and esters; its essential oil contains mostly volatile piperine, caryophyllene, pentadecane, and bisaboline.