Large cardamom is indigenous to India. Large cardamom is the dried fruit of a perennial herbaceous plant. The fruit is 4 to 6 times size of small cardamom. It is a less expensive and somewhat reasonable substitute for the small cardamom (Elettaria Cardamomum). Valued for its camphorous, pungent taste and peculiar flavour and aroma, large cardamom is used in rice preparations and meat dishes, besides a wide range of beverages and sweets. In India, it is a popular ingredient of pan masala.
The largest producer and exporter of large cardamom, India enjoys almost monopoly in this spice. The main production centres are the sub-Himalayan ranges spread across Sikkim, West Bengal and the North Eastern states. The most popular varieties are 'Ramsey', 'Golsey', and 'Sawany'.
Pakistan, Afghanistan, Singapore and UK are among the major importers of large cardamom.