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Description: Saffron is produced from the dried, yellowish orange 2.5 - 4 cm long stigmas of the purple-flowered saffron crocus Crocus sativus of the iris family (Iridaceae), native to Southern Europe and the Middle East. The stigmas are in the form of tubes which open out at the top into a funnel shape. It is the most valuable, most expensive spice in the world. Harvesting saffron is very labor-intensive: each blossom has three stigmas, which are picked by hand in the morning, before the heat of the day, and then dried for 15 - 30 minutes. The blossoms are thrown away. Saffron has an aromatic, hot and slightly bitter taste. Saffron contains a water-soluble coloring matter known as crocin, which provides a golden-colored dye which is effective even at a dilution of 1:100,000. 1 kg of saffron represents 100,000 to 200,000 blossoms, the stigmas of which have to be removed by hand, which explains the high price and the frequent cases of adulteration with parts of other plants and other organic or inorganic substances. Oil content: 0.4 - 1.3% essential oils, in particular picrocrocin (saffron-bitter)
Index: 631
Commodity Name: SAFFRON

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