The Complex Process of Saffron Production and Its Impact on Price

The Complex Process of Saffron Production and Its Impact on Price

Why is Saffron so expensive?

Kesar, another name for saffron, is one of the most costly spices available. The labour-intensive saffron harvesting process and the comparatively low saffron yield per flower are the main causes of the spice's high price. In this piece, we'll look at the factors that make saffron valuable as well as the reasons why it costs so much.

why is saffron so expensive

The stigma of the Crocus sativus plant, which only blossoms for a few weeks each year, is harvested to make saffron. Only three delicate stigmas are produced by each flower, which means they must be manually harvested before the bloom withers. One kilogram of saffron requires approximately 150,000 flowers to make, which explains why the spice is so expensive.


The soil and climate requirements for saffron cultivation increase the expense of the spice in addition to the labour-intensive harvesting process. The Crocus sativus plant is indigenous to the Mediterranean region and needs a particular set of circumstances to flourish. 


The environment must be dry and sunny with mild winters, and the soil must be well-draining and abundant in organic matter. The areas where saffron can be grown are constrained by the absence of these conditions, which raises the cost of the spice.


The medicinal qualities of saffron are another reason in its high cost. Traditional medicine has used saffron for thousands of years to address a variety of ailments, such as anxiety, PMS, age-related macular degeneration, and depression. Saffron may have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which may enhance mood and cognitive performance, according to some studies. Because of this, saffron is expensive and in high demand in the pharmaceutical business.


Due to its expensive cost, saffron has become a target for fraud and adulteration. Some vendors may combine pure saffron with other ingredients like plastic fibers, pepper, or even turmeric to increase weight and volume while lowering price. In order to guarantee the quality and purity of their saffron purchases, consumers should exercise caution and only buy from reliable sources.


As a result of its labour-intensive harvesting, restricted growing environments, medicinal qualities, and vulnerability to fraud and adulteration, saffron is expensive. Saffron continues to be a highly valued spice despite its high price, and its distinctive flavour and aroma make it a necessary component in many different cuisines all over the globe.

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