saffron

Tehran, Nov.10 (SENA) - A high ranking official in Iran's Ministry of Agriculture sounds on on ongoing schemes to set up a holding company specifically tasked to dominate over Saffron market and regulatory frameworks associated with it.

Securities and Exchange News Agency reported today that Hossein Zeinali shed new lights on plans in hand to establish a central holding company for Iranian Saffron produce so that the market becomes more manageable and stable according to him.

"The main goal of the government is to boost Saffron exports and that requires diligence and hard work in terms of regulating the market and cutting off the hands of middlemen who do nothing  but disrupting the market " SENA quoted Zeinali as saying.

He continued: Apart from regulatory endeavors, hardware aspect of farming ,harvesting and packing  of the Saffron produce is of immense importance and in that regard we in Ministry of Agriculture have taken measures to  encourage farmers to  go  fully mechanized and get everything done by high quality equipment  and machinery .

Iran now accounts for approximately 90% of the world production of saffron and grades of Iranian saffron are: "sargol" (red stigma tips only, strongest grade), "pushal" or "pushali" (red stigmas plus some yellow style, lower strength), "bunch" saffron (red stigmas plus large amount of yellow style, presented in a tiny bundle like a miniature wheatsheaf) and "konge" (yellow style only, claimed to have aroma but with very little, if any, colouring potential). Grades of Spanish saffron are "coupé" (the strongest grade, like Iranian sargol), "mancha" (like Iranian pushal), and in order of further decreasing strength "rio", "standard" and "sierra" saffron.

Saffron is widely used in Persian, Indian, European, and Arab cuisines. Confectioneries and soft drinks also often include saffron. Saffron is used in dishes ranging from the jewelled rice and  khoresh  of Iran, the Milanese  risotto of Italy, the  paella of Spain, the bouillabaisse of France, to the  biryani with various meat accompaniments in South Asia.

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