According to the international Standard ISO 3632, saffron is presented in three forms: filament, cut filament and powdered.
Filament saffron: This is a stigma with a portion of the style of saffron flower that has been dried in different ways.
Cut filament Saffron: This is a dried-up stigma from a flowering plant of saffron that has been completely isolated from the style.
Saffron powder: The grind particles are produced by dried saffron (filament and cut filament) so that the particles sizes are the same.
According to National Standard No. 259, saffron must have its own flavor, slightly bitter and spicy, free of any foreign flavor or smell. The production of saffron in the world is estimated to be 300 tons per year, which is covered 76 percent of this quantities by Iran.
Most important elements and factors of saffron:
The most important and the most used part of the saffron plant is its stigma. Also, the derivatives in saffron, in addition to taste and having a pleasant aroma of saffron, it also provides its therapeutic properties. The three main components of saffron are crocin (responsible for red color), picocrocin (responsible for bitter taste) And Safranal is (responsible for the smell) of saffron.
Picocrocin: The highest blend of bitter taste in saffron is the colorless glycosylated compound called picrocrocin. This compound is bitter and can be crystallized, after hydrolysis acid, glucose and aldehyde produces safranal.
Crocin: A carotenoid that finds low proportion in the nature, and its dissolving in water is very high, and this process is the main cause of the coloration of saffron after dissolving in water. Also, crocin is the main cause of color in the saffron flower stigmas.
Safranal: Safranal is the most important combination of saffron that produces a pleasant aroma.
Research shows that Iranian saffron has the highest percentage of the compounds which mentioned above.
Saffron has a variety of different prices on the market. The basis of all these categories is what parts of the saffron flower exist in the product.
Saffron is divided into four general categories:
4- White or konj
Saffron types are used to categorize in yellow and red.
Saffron in Iran is divided into four main categories.
Keep in mind that the meaning of the stigma is the red part and the order of the style is the yellow part of the filament of saffron.