Saffron cultivated and produced in Afghanistan has been recognized as the best in the world in terms of its quality for the eighth consecutive year, a member of the Saffron Producers Union in Kabul said.
According to the union, the quality and taste of the Afghan saffron were evaluated at an institution in Belgium.
“Every year, there is an improvement in saffron cultivation and production, and this improves the quality of our saffron,” said Bashir Ahmad Rashidi, head of the union.
Figures by the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock show that Afghanistan provides 8.15 tons (6.3%) of the world's global saffron consumption, which is 430 tons a year.
The figure also shows that Afghanistan produced 8.15 tons of saffron last year, bringing it into third place after Iran and India.
“A big part of the saffron production was tested in our standard laboratories for its quality and we found that the quality of the saffron is the best based on international standards and of course it is the best in the world in terms of its quality and form,” a spokesman for the Ministry of Agriculture, Akbar Rustami, said.
According to the Agriculture Ministry, the price for each kilogram of saffron in local markets is up to Afs90,000 ($1,145) and it is above $1,400 in international markets.