Saffron cultivation in Kashmir is very ancient and the recent efforts of the administration have given fresh hope to the saffron farmers for a better future.
Recently GI certification of saffron has been able to provide protection to Kashmiri saffron and its prices have also gone up.
Saffron is cultivated and harvested in the Karewas (highlands) of Jammu and Kashmir and has been assigned Geographical Indication (GI) tag by the Geographical Indications Registry. The spice is grown in Pulwama, Budgam, Kishtwar and Srinagar regions of Jammu & Kashmir.
Iran is the largest producer of saffron in the world and India is a close competitor. However, with the GI tag of Kashmir saffron, India becomes the only Saffron producing Country for which GI has been assigned which will result in more prominence in the export market thereby boosting exports as well as helping the farmers to get the best remunerative price for economic sustainability.
Kashmir has the distinction of producing one of the best saffron in the world, therefore it should be our individual/collective and moral responsibility to preserve this golden spice not only for a large number of families directly associated with the cultivation of saffron but for generations to come.