Saffron production technology in Kashmir -North India
Jain, Parveen Kumar, Bhagla, Dr. Kanika and Dr. Rana Aditya
Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) is the most expensive spice of the world, and it is one of the 85 members of the genus Crocus. A native of Asia minor, and presently it is cultivated in Mediterranean countries. It is one of the most decorated crops of Kashmir valley since its introduction. Saffron predominantly contains certain chemical constituents that are responsible for imparting color, flavor, and aroma. Some of its components have cytotoxic, anti-carcinogenic and anti-tumor properties.it is propagated through corms. The growing area for saffron is limited, although its demand in the international market is increasing. The Good Agronomic Practices GAP can improve the yield to 5 Kg/ha. Research activities have been initiated to develop new production technologies of this spice in many countries. Saffron grows best in friable, loose, low-density, well-watered, and well-drained clay calcareous soils. Besides, climate and soil, planting time, seed/corm rate, planting depth, corm size/weight, crop density, nutrient management, weed management, growth regulators, harvest, and post-harvest management also influence saffron quality and quality. The other aspects of drying and marketing of the product, whereas at the same time stringent laws to check the adulteration and smuggled produces are needed. Here, an attempt has been made to compile the recent agronomic research on saffron for commercial flower and corm production, and a need to meet the target of doubling the saffron production.