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In Afghanistan, saffron yield up by 22pc this year



In Afghanistan, saffron yield up by 22pc this year

Dec 25, 2019 - 14:15

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Saffron production in Afghanistaninfo-icon’s increased this year by 22 percent to 19,469 kilograms, the Ministry of Agricultureinfo-icon, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL) said on Wednesday.

The golden crop was cultivated on 7,557 hectares of land across the country in 2019, with the yield rising by 22 percent over the previous year.

Last year, a spokesman for the ministry said, saffron had been sown on 6,272 hectares of land. The yield was recorded at 16 tonnes.

Speaking for MAIL, Akbar Rustami said saffron production was particularly high in Herat, Balkh, Uruzgan, Daikundi and Sar-i-Pul provinces.

He added 7,000 hectares were sown with saffron in Herat, nearly 100 hectares in Balkh, 46 in Faryab, 45 in Kandahar, 39 in Uruzgan, 31 in Daikundi and 21 in Sar-i-Pul.

He attributed the hike in saffron production to increased cultivation, support to growers from the ministry like training and the distribution of quality seeds and creation of model plots. 

Four saffron-processing centres were equipped in Kabul, Ghazni, Faryab and Herat this year. Similarly, more than 2,000 males and females were trained on how to process saffron.

The MAIL spokesman said 100 samples of Afghanistan’s saffron produced this year had undergone quality tests in the country’s standard laboratories.

Based on the quality test results, Rustami claimed, the Afghanistan-produced saffron was found the best in the worldinfo-icon.

Saffron traders earned over $27 million this year. The ministry said it had drawn up five years ago a plan to increase the saffron yield in the country to 14 tonnes by 2020.

The increased production shows the ministry has been able to produce six tonnes more and a year earlier than the proposed time period.




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