History of Saffron

Saffron History

What is the history of Saffron?

Saffron’s history goes back to 3500 years ago. Saffron from ancient times has always been the most expensive spice in the world. Though there are some uncertainty about the use of saffron for the first time, the common belief is that it was first used in Iran and Greece.

Saffron has played a very important role throughout history of different countries. In Greece, they would pick saffron flowers and then use it for as a herbal medicine for health problems. The Mediterranean residence would gather Saffron flowers and because of its high quality, would use it as medicine or perfume.

In Europe though saffron was not completely know before 18th century where in France, they used to cultivate Saffron as perfect spice for their dishes while by the time passing, only royal families would use saffron for its benefits. With the industrial revolution, saffron cultivation in Europe reduced except for countries like Spain or France where this spice had a traditional history. From that time until now, Europe is more of a Saffron importer from other countries, Especially Iran. In Italy, saffron is produced primarily in southern area, especially in the Abruzzo region, but also grows in significant numbers in Basilicata. Sardinia, Tuscany (especially in San Gimingano). High labor costs and abundant Iranian imports have somewhat limited the production of this product in these areas.

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