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Defining the Purity of Kashmiri Saffron

Defining the Purity of Kashmiri Saffron

Defining the Purity of Kashmiri Saffron

Often, referred to as the golden spice, what makes saffron so precious? Is it a vibrant red colour? Or is it the luxurious flavour adding an extra dose of temptation to a platter? The fact is, Kashmiri saffron is not just a spice but an indulgence! Delicately handpicked from the Crocus Sativus flower, the highest grade saffron is harvested in the fields of the Pampore region in Kashmir.

The spice is extensively used in various cuisines to enhance flavour and charm. Despite, the high demand for organic Kashmiri saffron, the production is low because you can pick only three strands from a single flower! Can you imagine how much hard work goes into the harvesting of saffron?

Nevertheless, the worldwide market of saffron is enormous, giving way to impressive profits. What happens when the demand is high, and the supply is low? The price rises, including the chances of adulteration. Naturally, you have fake saffron slowly contaminating the market.

Today, we will discuss the extraction of pure saffron and how you can distinguish it from its counterfeit. Stay informed to escape forgery!

The Story of Saffron Harvest

Kashmir is the land of saffron harvest because of the ideal weather and soil conditions. The soil is rich in crocin, providing the blood red colour to saffron. Before the plantation of saffron seeds, the soil is thoroughly prepped throughout the year. From soil gradation to moisture, all the factors are meticulously administered. The sowing of the seeds begins in early September.

During October, the plants start flowering, and by early November, they reach their peak. It means that the flowers are mature and ready to be plucked. At this time, each flower is carefully hand-plucked to ensure other parts of the plant remain unaffected. Now, the flowers are stored precisely for processing. Let’s tell you, to derive premium-grade natural Kashmiri saffron, storage plays a crucial role. Storing them improperly can spoil the stock.

Now, this is an interesting section. Typically, the saffron flower has three parts- purple petals, red stigmas, and yellow stamen. The red stigmas are the saffron threads. These are the most important parts of the flower.
The story does not end here! The quality of saffron is classified into grades, which we will discuss in the next section.

Understanding Saffron Grades

We speak of the purity of saffron. What does purity mean? It refers to the quality, right? So, which is the purest form of saffron?

  • Mongra or Super Negin– It is the purest and highest quality saffron referred by Grade I. Deep red colour, Mongra is the top-most part of the saffron thread. It consists only of the stigmas and not any other plant part. Rich in crocin, aroma, and colour, Mongra forms the highest grade of the purity standards of Kashmiri saffron.
  • Sargol– Generally, the saffron you find in the market is Sargol which is Grade II. It is also bright red but contains the end part of the stigma which is either yellow or white. The thickness of the threads varies.
  • Pushal– It is Grade III saffron, which is comparatively less expensive. Pushal contains the red stigma with a portion of the yellow or white part of the flower. So, you do not get the bright red colour. Pushal is extensively used in perfumes, pharmaceutical drugs, cosmetics, and incense.
  • Bunch– Bunch saffron is also called Dokhtar and is the poorest quality. It is identified as Grade IV. The bunch consists of the stigma and the whole style. Hence, the price is cheaper.


If you do not know how to identify the quality of saffron, you may be paying more than it is worth! At Bhatani Products, our Kashmiri saffron certifies the highest grade, ensuring purity with optimal benefits. Reach us for your pack of unadulterated golden spice!

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