Clove is one of the oldest spices in the world, is the dried, unopened flower bud of a small evergreen tree. It is indigenous to the Moluccas Islands of Indonesia. In India, cloves come from Mercara in Karnataka, and Kerala. Cloves both whole and ground are used in baked goods, cakes, confectionery, chocolate, puddings, desserts, sweets, syrups, preserves etc.

Clove is used for flavouring curries, gravies, pickles, ketchup and sauces, spice mixtures and pickling spices. Clove goes mainly as an ingredient in beverages, medicines, cosmetics, perfumery and toiletries. It has powerful local antiseptic and mild anaesthetic actions. It has been discovered that like many spices, clove contains antioxidants which help prevent the cell damage that scientists believe eventually causes cancer. Cloves are also used as an ingredient in many toothpastes and mouth washes.