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First saffron farm in Jordan harvests first crop

Saffron 1
Saffron Jo, located in Dahal area, between Jerash and Mafraq governorates harvested its first crop on Tuesday, November 16, 2021. (Photo: Saffron Jo)
JERASH — Jordan’s first saffron farm harvested its first crop on Tuesday with the participation of the Minister of Agriculture Khaled Hniefat.اضافة اعلان

Saffron Jo, located in Dahal area, between Jerash and Mafraq governorates, was established by Adel Soboh four years ago in cooperation with National Agricultural Research Centre.

Saffron is cultivated mainly for its red stigmas, the female organs of the saffron flower and is used for food seasoning and producing medicine. Other parts of the flower are used to produce soaps and cosmetics such as body butters.
Soboh said that producing 1g of saffron requires 150 flowers and 1kg is worth JD10,000, making saffron among the most expensive crops.



Saffron Jo, located in Dahal area, between Jerash and Mafraq governorates harvested its first crop on Tuesday, November 16, 2021. (Photo: Saffron Jo)

“Over the past four years, we have been cultivating saffron bulbs underground and this year we harvested the first flowers,” Soboh told Jordan News on Wednesday.

He said that the farm distributed thousands of bulbs to the ministry and to many individual farmers across the Kingdom to help spread this type of agriculture, and see how successfully they grow in different areas.

“We have received great feedback from all farmers in all areas in Jordan including Ramtha, Jerash, Ajloun, the Jordan Valley, and Shobak, which means saffron can be produced in almost all of Jordan,” Soboh said.

“Saffron is still not widely used in Jordanian cuisine, so I contracted a pharmaceutical company to produce dietary supplements and cosmetic products. The company has already started manufacturing products which are currently in the study phase,” Soboh said, adding that Saffron Jo will take part in the upcoming National Olives Festival slated for November 25 in Amman to showcase some of its products.

He said the farm 10 people from the local community for 150 days out of the year, and contributes to creating jobs elsewhere.


Saffron Jo, located in Dahal area, between Jerash and Mafraq governorates harvested its first crop on Tuesday, November 16, 2021. (Photo: Saffron Jo)

“I studied English literature, which is not related to this field, however, agriculture was always my hobby and now it is the job I love,” Soboh said.
Hniefat called for spreading the cultivation of crops with high financial returns in all governorates, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

He said that the research centres are working on the cultivating bulbs and distributing them to farmers across the Kingdom, as well as training them on the cultivation of this plant and it products.

Among the customers of Saffron Jo is Lara Titi, a local producer of soap, body butters and whitening creams using camel milk.

Titi said that she prefers saffron from this new farm because it is fresh, appropriately stored, and planted in pristine land with less pollution. 
“This saffron is much better than (the imported variety) as it is fresh, which means it has not lost its benefits over a long period of storage and shipping,” Titi said, adding the local saffron is cultivated and packed professionally.

Currently, Titi has her own workshop to produce soap and also has contracted a licensed manufacturer for other products. She employs many local women who work at her workshop and from their homes in producing and packaging her products.


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