Saffron needs scientific outlook to gain sustainable market

Mashhad, Khorasan Razavi Prov., Dec 11, IRNA – Head of the Board of Directors of Iran Saffron Scientific Association said today in the absence of technical and scientific outlook to the saffron cycle of production, processing and trade a sustainable market cannot be expected for the product at international arena.
Ali Asghar Padaarlou told IRNA that today efforts are being made to transfer traditional cultivation, development and production of saffron into an industrial practice.

In line with this, he added, the outlook towards producers under the current condition of fields and through coordination with the government and scientific and research associations is among major plans.

He further remarked that saffron processing and trade with regard to using the result of scientific projects and principled policy making is among essentials of the production cycle.

The official said the government as the policy maker of saffron and scientific societies and associations, research centers and saffron businessmen, in the absence of a technical and scientific outlook to the cycle of production up to export and marketing cannot play their effective role in sustainability and stability of the product and maintenance of its monopoly in the country.

The saffron expert noted that among priorities in this field is realization of increasing its present tonnage from 3.5 kg in hectare to eight to 10 kg, adding that in order to increase its production and have safe production certain issues should be discussed.

According to him, presentation of scientific and practical mechanisms with regard to saffron cultivation in the month of Khordad (May/June) with the concentration of 90 to 100 saffron bulbs in each square meter with a weight above eight grams and reduction of productivity period from eight years to four years are among other topics of discussion.

He also mentioned establishment of close relations between the government and saffron producers and tradesmen for presentation of scientific and regional mechanisms and holding of scientific conferences with an approach on production and export in its true sense as other mechanisms for improvement of the condition in this sector.

He said through application of local knowledge with regard to regional climate production can make a seven fold increase but it should be noted that in case of ignorance Chinese and Afghan saffron will make the market instable.

Annually, out of 60 thousand hectares of saffron fields in Khorasan Razavi Province 200 tons of saffron are cultivated which constitute 78% of the saffron production in Iran.



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